Report: 2nds v Eastleigh (A), Sat. 26 Nov. 2016

Eastleigh III 66-0 IW II

Isle of Wight RFC’s second team’s recent winning run came to a shuddering end at Bishopstoke, as they were trounced by a very strong Eastleigh. The home club are clearly thriving as all three of their sides enjoyed comprehensive home wins on the day, and their third string were comfortably the strongest opposition faced by IW this season to date.

IW had a number of new players on duty and some of the team had to play in unaccustomed positions, but none of this is to take away from Eastleigh who boasted a powerful and experienced team which IW could not match. Whether driving through the forwards or using their slick back division, Eastleigh had IW at sixes and sevens and constructed some superb tries. They were helped by some sub-standard IW defence at times, but most of their scores were the result of excellent combinations and led to a 42-0 half-time lead.

The Islanders dug deep and were more competitive for most of the second half, as the winners’ scoring dried up and IW created some chances of their own, before Eastleigh finished the stronger. Rouse Ltd man of the match Tom Turtle filled in numerous positions, while Evan Toms and James Webster were IW’s standout defenders and also were the closest to scoring; Toms made a brilliant break which was halted just short of the line, while Webster blocked an opposition clearance but the ball spun away from him just as the try seemed certain. IW thanked the four Southampton players who guested for them, and will look forward to quickly recovering from this defeat.

IW: Harley, Sabin, Toms, McQueen, Webster, T Turtle, Leahy, Aubert, Pettifer, Martin, J Bishop, Wilson, Kearney, Richardson, Greedy. Reps: Johnston, W Smith, Bowles.