Ealing Trailfinders 38-12 Hartpury College
Ealing Trailfinders enjoyed a six-try win over Hartpury College to round off their pre-season preparations and ensure they go into the Greene King IPA Championship season with three wins behind them in pre-season.
Ben Ward’s team scored four tries before half-time and added a further two in the second half to add a victory over the students to away wins over Coventry and a Dragons Development XV.
After the early exchanges it didn’t take Ealing Trailfinders long to take control of the match and after two penalties took them close to the Hartpury College line, they soon scored their first try of the day.
Prop Lewis Thiede cleared up a messy line-out and after Joe Munro broke the defensive line, quick recycled ball allowed fly-half Jonny Bentley to pop the ball to Luke Daniels, who wiggled through the Hartpury College defence to open the scoring.
It gave the home team the confidence to take the match by the scruff of the neck and after great work at the breakdown by Mike Macfarlane secured turn-over ball, play went wide to Aled Jenkins. He in turn set Daniels free and after Hartpury College stopped the fullback he off-loaded to Phil Chesters for a simple finish.
Thiede and Ignacio Sanchez continued to provide a strong platform from the scrum, though both teams experienced problems with the wind at the line-out.
Even so Ealing Trailfinders scored their third try before the half-hour when Bentley found space to scoot over. Then after a swift counter-attack down the back-line took play from one end of the field to the other, Daniels finished the move for his second.
The visitors continued to play their own game and after they kicked a penalty to the corner, number 8 Jake Polledri touched down from the back of a rolling maul.
Will Harries came off the bench at half-time and within a few minutes scored the first try of the second half when he dotted down in the corner. Two minutes later James Cordy-Redden, another half-time substitute, finished in similar fashion in the other corner.
Hartpury College continued to press when they had the chance and Arthur Ellis and Alex Walker had to stand firm in defence when their impressive scrum-half Harry Cochrane threatened to set wing Jonas Mikalcius free.
Harries also stopped Mikalcius as the big wing made ground, but eventually Hartpury College found a way through when Italy international Seb Negri found a gap to race over for a try that Adam Hastings converted to finish the score for the afternoon.
Next Saturday Ealing Trailfinders open their Championship campaign against Yorkshire Carnegie at Vallis Way.
Tries (Daniels 5, 28, Chesters 7, Bentley 16, Harries 47, Cordy-Redden 50), Conversions (Daniels 8, 17, 29, Ward 48)
Tries (Polledri 34, Negri 63), Conversions (Hastings 63)
Luke Daniels, Curtis Wilson, Aled Jenkins, Joe Munro, Phil Chesters, Jonny Bentley, Luke Carter; Ignacio Lancuba, Rhys Lawrence, Lewis Thiede, Carwyn Jones, Llewelyn Jones, Willie Ryan, Mike Macfarlane, Mark Bright (captain)
James Gibbons, Arthur Ellis, Will Davis, Iain Grieve, Chris York, Alex Walker, Ben Ward, James Cordy Redden, Lewis Jones, Rhys Crane, Will Harries, Matt Cornish, Ziana Alexis, Scott Andrews
Mike Wilcox, Darren Atkins, Steve Leonard, Luke Eves, Jack Randall, Jake Perry, Harry Cochrane; Mike Flook, William Tanner, Tim Brockett, Ben So'oialo-Chan, Joe Quinn, Jake Polledri, Matt Gilbert, Rhys Oakley
Des Merrey, Luke Stratford, Nathan Taylor, Wayne Thompson, Jack Spencer, Joe Dancer, James Stephenson, Sebastian Negri, Jack Coombes, Adam Hastings, James Forrester, George Boulton, Jonas Mikalcius
Referee – Fergus Kirby (RFU)