Alresford RFC 34-15 Ventnor RFC 1XV match report
Counties 3 Hampshire, Saturday 7 October 2023
Ventnor’s 1st XV put on a fine performance away to an Alresford RFC team who came down from a higher league at the end of last season.
The game started with Ventnor RFC 1XV having slightly the better of the possession and territory with the set piece working well.
As ever George Collett and Ben Savill set the platform from which skipper Lewis Jones could show his full range of skills at hooker.
Andy Teague and Jason Coltham are proving a strong and athletic pairing in the second row while Joe Coghlan and Lewy Morton won clean ball in the lineout and performed their usual defensive duties with an impressive appetite.
Ventnor showed great discipline and cohesion in the first half, taking the lead with a Ben Cooper penalty.
However, a hurried kick out of defence led to a sweeping move by Alresford to which the visitors failed to respond and the winger scored under the posts. This was followed by a great try by the Alresford flyhalf – their star player – and suddenly Ventnor were 14 – 3 down against the run of play.
However, Ventnor continued to take the game to the opposition – at one point putting in a play than spanned nineteen phases – and gained a good position when Fred Fairman, Will Harrison and Teague set up a position so Jones was throwing into a lineout just five metres out.
Morton soared high to catch the ball, a maul was formed, Ed Blake took the ball forward, Ben Souter recycled and Morton put Dylan Gray in the corner for his first try for the Islanders. Cooper’s conversion attempt just slipped by the posts.
The halftime score 14 – 8.
The momentum was definitely with Ventnor but a fumbled restart led to a quick try to Alresford who then began to control the game by slowing everything down with a multitude of stoppages that broke Ventnor’s rhythm and negated the Islander’s superior fitness.
Two penalties and a further try by their flyhalf stretched the home team’s lead to 34 and it took some strong defence by Souter and Callum Martin to stem the tide.
Adam Pratt, Harry Colson and Grant Richardson came on to add some power and, at the end of the game, Morton took clean lineout ball again for Colson to make the hard yards that allowed Souter to scuttle over for a well-deserved try.
Final score 34 – 15
Team: Collett, Jones (capt), Savill, Teague, Coltham, Coghlan, L. Morton, Harrison, Souter, Lines, Martin, Fairman, Cooper, Gray, E. Blake.
Subs: Colson, Richardson, Pratt
Coaches: Jason Evans and Clive Cardwell-Hill
Physio: Sarah Watt
Match report: JAMES MORTON
Next fixtures – Saturday 14 October 2023
Next Saturday (14th October) Ventnor’s 1st XV play Romsey at Watcombe. Kick off tba.
The Rugby World Cup 2023 quarter finals will be being shown in the clubhouse: Wales v Argentina and Ireland v New Zealand.
T: 07901 938 317
All fixtures are subject to change or cancellation at short notice.