GAME three of our tough trio of fixtures saw us face the league leaders Ealing at the Trailfinders sports ground.
After the previous week’s disappointment we were looking to bounce back from the poor performance against Richmond and saw this week as an opportunity to do this.
As we had been written off by most pundits, there was very little pressure on us and we could go to try to cause an upset.
The side saw a few changes, Rob Smith and myself came into the back row at the expense of Liam and Sam. Mike Marsh stared at scrum-half, while the rest of the backs stayed the same. Matt McLean had still not recovered from his injury.
The game itself was played at a fast pace with both sides playing an open, entertaining style of rugby, mixed with some fully committed defence.
We had more than our fair share of possession and created phase after phase, which is something we haven’t been able to do in the in the previous weeks.
Unfortunately, we either coughed the ball up too easily at the critical moment or were just ineffective at breaking the Ealing line.
We had our chances but were just not clinical enough.
Charlie McGowan did touch down following a well-worked move from a scrum but this combined with Joe Govett’s conversion and penalty, were our only points of the game.
In contrast, the Ealing backs looked slick and dangerous every time they got the ball. They punished us when we made mistakes and turned the ball over and given the slightest room, they showed their pace.
In truth, the scoreline does not do justice to how competitive the game was. I’m not saying that Ealing weren’t good for their win, they are not top of this highly-competitive league for nothing, it is just that we were in this game far more than the scoreline suggests.
So that’s three games against the “big three” in this league and three losses. Before the Jersey game, we had real belief that we could turn at least one of these teams over, but it was not to be and we end this passage of the season very disappointed. Still, we will go away and work on the things that need addressing and attempt a fine end to the season.
Other wins this week went to Jersey, Richmond, Lydney, Hinckley, Southend, Taunton and OA’s
This week, we face another tough challenge in the form of Taunton, who make their first visit to the rugby ground.
We hope to bounce back from the disappointment of the previous weeks and get back to winning ways again back at home. We hope to see as many of you on Saturday as possible.