Rugby - IW v Ventnor at Watcombe
RUGBY IW 19, Bognor 38
WITH Bognor fighting for second spot in Hampshire One, this was going to be a test of the progress IW have made over recent weeks, especially in the light of a 67-0 defeat at Bognor early in the season.
Early signs were not good as the visitors struck twice to take a 14-0 lead. But IW switched on and great driving play opened up the visitors. From this pressure, a quick tap by Brett Evans led to him grounding the ball, Harry Dye adding the conversion.
Bognor showed their slick back play with a neat offload to their fullback and a further try left the visitors 28-7 up at half time.
The second half was a totally different story.
IW’s pack, dominant in the set plays all game, made inroads to the Bognor line and strong running in the backs had IW dominating possession and position.
Rouse Ltd man of the match Ian Puzey stood out, playing in the unfamiliar position of flanker.
With 30 minutes of the second half remaining pointless, the last ten saw four further tries.
Mike Wood latched on to a loose ball to sprint over, Dye adding the kick. Bognor then charged down a kick and was judged to have grounded the ball before the dead ball line.
In response, Evans broke out and crossed for his second. With the home side chasing a fourth try and a loss of seven points or less, to gain two bonus points, Bognor struck to break away and complete the scoring. However, the determination and effort of the home side will keep them in good stead for the run in to the end of the season.
IW: Stirrup, Huish, Wood, Taylor, Williams, Dye, Evans, Tennant, Hay, Puzey, Smith, Brown, D. Tanner, Newnham, M. Tanner, Brading, Puckett, Tucker.
IW II 0, Trojans III 46
Tables were turned in emphatic fashion at Wootton Rec on Saturday as Trojans avenged their home defeat to IW II earlier in the season.
IW were overpowered by a side with an enormous size advantage in the scrum, but more unusually their lineout was also eclipsed by the experienced mainlanders.
This left IW with very little possession to work with and Trojans enjoying the lion’s share of the ball, resulting in the mainlanders scoring five first half tries and making it 29-0 at the break.
Save for a thrilling Tony Lillington break near the end of the half, it was a best forgotten 40 minutes for IW.
The second half was a much more competitive affair. IW tightened up considerably in defence and were competing very well in the tackle area, with Rouse Ltd man of the match Ryan Stewart at the fore.
A scoreless third quarter ensured there would be no IW comeback, but winning the second half looked an achievable aim. Inroads were made by Stewart and the promising Dan Greaves and Sam McQueen out wide, but errors and good scrambling Trojans defence kept IW from opening their account. Trojans made better use of their opportunities, finishing the game in control and adding tries at the death to cement their win.
IW: Collinson, Wynyard-Wright, McQueen, Dalchow, Greaves, Harley, Lillington, Brine, Love, Keyes, Dixon, Westley, Tucker, Taylor, Stewart, Wright.