|Location||Actonians Sports Club|
|Competition||Herts & Middlesex 1|
|Vice Captain||Pat Nash|
|Coaches||Mark Percival, Tom Gamage|
|Team Manager||Vittorio Spadavecchia|
|Press Attaché||Rob Williams|
|Touch Judge||Kyle Beck|
|Travel||All to go direct|
|Team Meeting||Changing room 12:30. £5 fine into team kitty for late arrival. Message or phone team manager if running late.|
|Team Rota||Post-match duties players 1-4|
|Dress code post-match||Shirt and tie|
If Friday or later cry-off then message or phone Ricky immediately 07956 442502
1 Leighton Price
2 Evan Poole
3 Pat Nash
4 Nyall Wake
5 Harvey Paull
6 Andrea Costa
7 Ian Kilcoyne
8 Chris Joyce
9 Euan Jones
10 Lewis Steadman
11 Toby Holt
12 Josh Steadman
13 Luca Townsend
14 Danny O'Sullivan
15 Matt Lacour
16 Fabio Krasniqi
17 Matt Knights
18 Daniel Ford
1871 round off first half of league season with eight tries
An ability to consistently turn opportunities into points enabled Ealing Trailfinders 1871 to move up to fourth in the table at the mid-way point with the second-highest total points scored. Actonians battled throughout, and a 40-point difference was not an entirely accurate reflection of the difference between the two old local rivals.
On a dull, drizzly December afternoon, Ealing went straight onto the attack and led after 2 minutes with scrum half Euan Jones, making his first start after an injury layoff, finishing under the posts for a try converted by Lewis Steadman, captain for the day in the absence of Liam McDonagh, and playing on this occasion at fly half. Actonians soon afterwards drew a penalty but missed out on 3 points as the kick hit the upright. 1871 flanker Harvey Paull suffered an early injury and had to leave the field, replaced by Fabio Krasniqi. Further Actonians pressure through the forwards eventually yielded a try in the left-hand corner, well converted, before Ealing re-took the lead through Chris Joyce, playing at No 8, with Steadman converting. A powerful scrum with prop Leighton Price to the fore forced a penalty. Pinned back in their 22 metre area from the resultant lineout, Actonians kicked to touch, and a quick throw-in left Jones in space to scuttle over for his second score of the day, the conversion attempt being the only one of Ealing’s tally of eight to be missed.
With half an hour gone an Ealing attack looked to be petering out, but Josh Steadman, playing at inside centre, broke a tackle and carved his way through the remaining defence to secure the four-try bonus point. With the break approaching, aggressive running by both forwards and backs put Actonians on the back foot, and Lewis Steadman sent a long pass out to Danny O’Sullivan on the left wing, who marked his league debut with a try.
Actonians applied pressure to the Ealing line at the end of the first period, and continued in the same vein after the break, deservedly scoring in midfield. With Dan Ford, also making his league debut, and Matt Knights on as replacements, 1871 returned to the attack, and it was a strong direct run by Knights down the right wing that created a second try for the ever-alert Josh Steadman. There was no drop in intensity in the increasingly gloomy conditions, with Actonians forced to kick aimlessly out of defence. Lewis Steadman put in a cross-field kick that was fumbled by the Actonians defender, Knights seized on the loose ball and Joyce bulldozed his way over for his second of the day. There was still time for Josh Steadman to complete his hat-trick, running from deep and leaving would-be tacklers trailing in his wake. The home team pounded the Ealing line as the final whistle approached, but were held out by resolute defence.
With Saracens losing to Barnet, 1871 rise to fourth in the table after the first round of fixtures, and are well placed to make further progress if they can maintain their improving form in the New Year, with return fixtures against the other leading teams coming thick and fast.
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