Ealing Trailfinders Rugby Club Ealing Trailfinders Rugby Club

Townson ready for big challenge in chase to top pool

Glen Townson is expecting another titanic match as Ealing Trailfinders chase a home British and Irish Cup quarterfinal place when they take on Yorkshire Carnegie on Saturday.

Ben Ward’s team travel to Scarborough Rugby Club in the knowledge that one point will guarantee them top spot in Pool 5, but that more may be needed to secure a home quarterfinal on the weekend of 10, 11 and 12 March. 

It will be the third time the sides have met this season. Carnegie opened the Greene King IPA Championship season with a 30-13 victory at Vallis Way, but when the sides met again in the Cup in October, it was the west Londoners who prevailed 51-35. 

“I think it will be a really physical game, they have a good pack of forwards and a really strong set piece,” Townson said. “It is a big game for them, they may have to win the game to go through to the quarters and I think it will be a huge challenge up there. 

“It will be tricky conditions. It is always windy on the coast. Coming from Morecambe I know all about that. We have to be a bit more pragmatic with our approach and it is likely to be the team that exits the best and makes the least amount of errors that comes out on top.”

Ealing Trailfinders sit five points clear of Carnegie, an advantage they maintained with their 56-19 win over Dragons Premiership Select at Vallis Way on Saturday. 

Townson led the team out as captain, the first time he has been given the honour since his arrival in W13 from Bristol in December. 

“It was great to captain the team and it was a terrific result as well,” he said. “We came away from the game a little frustrated with how we finished, but it is great that we have the quarter-final secured and this weekend we have the challenge of trying to get the home quarter-final, which is what the boys want. 

“It was a privilege to be asked to do it. It came out of the blue and didn’t expect it. The boys were good with it and made my job easier. I didn’t have to do much because the boys were on it from minute one.”