Ealing Trailfinders Rugby Club Ealing Trailfinders Rugby Club

JK expects Fylde to signal start of tough few weeks

Ealing Trailfinders’ Jamie Kilbane expects entertainment galore for the fans at Vallis Way on Saturday when Fylde visit W13.

Mark Nelson’s team are currently third in National 1 and have a reputation for playing a similar open, running style to Ealing Trailfinders. Wing Ollie Brennand has scored 11 tries this season, while fly-half is third in the points-scoring charts with 111. 

“I think we can expect a very fast and open game as that is the sort of game that Fylde like to play the most, ” Kilbane said. “So lots and lots of tries potentially, for us and not so many for them hopefully. 

“There will be lots of running around, but we train to play for a wide and expansive game-plan, so we should be able to do it all.”

The prop forward was named STORM Watches man of the match in the most recent fixture, the 64-43 win at home to Tynedale.

The match at Vallis Way was a classic game of two halves. After Tynedale had opened the scoring and swapped two tries apiece with Ealing Trailfinders, the hosts took control and ran in six tries to bring up the half century before halftime. 

However, the visitors enjoyed the better of the second half. They ran in five more scores and while Ealing Trailfinders scored two more and didn’t appear likely to lose, there were probably a lot of Tynedale players and staff scratching their heads on their way back to the north east wondering how they could score seven tries and not win the match. 

“We seemed to be very dominant and then we seemed to let the opposition come back quite a bit, ” Kilbane added. “I have been in teams that have had very dominant performances, but didn’t let the opposition come back. 

“You have to review the week, but you can’t fixate as you need to move on to the next match because there’s no rest in this league.”

The 31-year-old Ulsterman joined Ealing Trailfinders over the summer from London Scottish and quickly made himself a firm fixture in the starting XV. 

He has helped Ealing Trailfinders to the top of National 1, but he is aware that the next few weeks will be the most challenging of the season with trips to Rosslyn Park and Coventry and local derbies at home to Blackheath and Old Albanian to come before Christmas. 

“Being top of the league is great, ” he said, “but I think the thing we realise is that each week is going to be tough and we’re really going to have to consistently perform all the way through the league. It feels like we’ve been playing forever, but we’re only a third of the way through. 

“There’s a lot of focus on the next few weeks because there are lots of derbies and a few of the top four sides. Our current focus is on the next five weeks alone and getting through that spell and then we’ll re-gather after Christmas.”