IW 32 Fordingbridge 29 Report by Dave Metcalfe
The Isle of Wight returned to winning ways with a well-earned victory against Fordingbridge rugby club. The first half saw the Island dominate both territory and possession through the cool heads of halfbacks Lewis Murray and Tom Marriott. After a couple of first half penalties from Murray, the Isle of Wight scored from a push over try with Alex Smith being the grateful recipient. The Island continued to heap pressure through the forwards with stella work from Keyes, Blackman and McQueen. The forwards hard work resulted in a scrum which saw Smith picking up from the base and running forty meters whilst swatting off several defenders to score in the corner.
Minutes later Isle of Wight super star Owen Herbert, feeling that his title as ‘leading try scorer’ was under threat, decided to take on half the Fordingbridge pack and then run 45 meters to score under the posts.
The second half saw the Island relinquish some of their control with Fordingbridge capitalising on some loose handling. Up stepped man on the match Andi Raunigger who brought physicality and intensity to the Island’s defence effort which helped to steady the ship, many spectators likening his performance to rugby great Paul Simpson! The island continued to aggressively defend which saw super sub Mikey Wood smash his opposite number, collect the ball and sprint clear to score under the posts.
Fordingbridge did not lie down and continued to press scoring a couple of late tries which brought them to within touching distance of a win. The Isle of Wight dug deep with Boulter and Blackman turning into tackling machines to shut down the Fordingbridge comeback and give the Island a much deserved victory.
O Herbert, T Turtle, L Chandler, G Huish, G Warvill, L Murray, T Marriott, A Smith, D Blackman, A Hay, A Raunigger, O Boulter, R Keyes, S McQueen, M Newnham. J Willetts, D Egan, M Wood.