Jersey hit the ground running for 2014/15 with a powerful
display to which their Scottish visitors had no answer.
The two sides claimed a home win apiece in the matches they
contested in last season's British & Irish Cup, but the latest
encounter was largely one-way traffic on a bright and breezy
With a solid platform provided by their forwards, Jersey's backs
profited out wide, and winger Ed Dawson crossed twice in opposite
corners for the Islanders' first tries of the season.
Struggling to compete with their hosts at the set piece, Ayr
conceded a yellow card for prop Fraser Watt and then a penalty try
for scrum offences. Further pressure shortly before half-time saw
centre Drew Locke burst through for a fourth try after strong
running from Sam Lockwood and Dave Markham.
Nick Haining, one of 13 players making their Jersey debut, made
a fine run to the try-line soon after the resumption but was hauled
down just short, while Lewis Robling just failed to pick up a deft
grubber kick by Jonny Bentley. But skipper Ryan Hodson finished off
two rolling mauls for tries, in between which Kingsley Lang scored
after a fine break by Mark McCrea.
Although out-muscled, Ayr continued to play with spirit and came
very close to a consolation score after good interplay between
David Armstrong and Ben Patterson. Bentley saw yellow for spoiling
tactics but the Jersey line remained unbreached.
Harvey Biljon said after the match: "There were lots of
positives and one of the things that pleased me most was to see
things that we had worked on in training executed in a match
situation. Fair play to Ayr, they certainly fronted up in both
defence and attack, but we had too much for them and the way we
held them out at the end epitomised the spirit in the squad.
"We have a huge test coming next week with a top Premiership
team coming over, but my intention remains the same - to give the
whole squad game time, test out partnerships and the understanding
between the players and prepare ourselves for the start of the
Jersey v Bath is next Saturday at St Peter - kick-off is at 3pm.
- Tickets are available to purchase ahead of Saturday through the
club shop, and will also be on sale on Friday evening at the
Jersey: Bell, Foster (Burroughs 50), Locke
(Bentley 41), McCrea, Dawson, Robling (Hoskins 50), Dudley (Glynn
50); Lockwood (Lancuba 41), Garcia-Veiga (Harris 41), Herriott
(Williams 41), Phillips, Markham, Haining (Lang 50), Hodson (capt),
Maidment (Noone 50).
Ayr: Beckwith, Renwick, Gossman C, Kelbrick
(capt), Gossman K, McCluskey Armstrong; Hunter, Scott, Watt,
McAlpine, Sutherland, Johnson, Bordill, Macpherson. Rolling
replacements: Young, Fenwick, Dunlop, Siwo, Preston, Cooper,
Referee: John Meredith
Star Man: Ryan Hodson (Jersey)
Tries: Dawson 4, 12, Penalty Try 30, Locke 34, Hodson 50,
73, Lang 62
Conversions: Bell 4, 30, 34, 73
Why not get yourself a Hot Pot (Curry or Chilli served with rice) in the supporters marquee £8 per pot.