London Scottish 29 Jersey 3
/*report by Ron Felton reproduced by courtesy of Jersey
Evening Post, picture courtesy of London
London Scottish were, as usual, the friendliest of hosts off the
field, but they gave Jersey nothing at all in administering a 29-3
defeat at the Athletic Ground.
Jersey's heaviest defeat of the season was their third consecutive
defeat in the Greene King IPA Championship and, with Scottish
gaining a bonus point from a four tries to nil success, it was a
tough one to take for a large turnout of travelling
Scottish, always a difficult proposition at home, will now look to
push on towards the play-off spots, while Jersey must be wondering
what they can do to convert their regular amounts of possession
into match-winning points and get away from the foot of the
Pointless Ealing are now the only side beneath them, though Jersey
are far from isolated from the other sides in the bottom half of
the division. Indeed, a win on Sunday could have had them rise
three places and to within a couple of points of Scottish
The Reds started well and took the lead when a penalty awarded from
a scrum in the second minute gave stand-off Niall O'Connor the
opportunity to rifle the ball over the bar from 40 metres on the
right. But Jersey were not to score again, or get little else from
referee Tom Foley, who frustrated the Jersey pack with his rulings
on the scrum, breakdown and use of advantage for much of the
Jersey's lead only lasted a few minutes, with Scottish's impressive
centre PJ Gidlow finishing a try to the left of the visitors' posts
after some intense pressure. Lee Millar added an easy conversion,
but didn't add to the score with a penalty near the half-way line
Referee Foley ruled out a smart-looking Jersey 'try' by Aaron
Penberthy after O'Connor kicked wide to the right, then moments
later warned a bemused Jersey skipper Alex Rae over his team's
penalty misdemeanours. True to his word, the official then
yellow-carded No 8 Tom Brown who was the next to offend the
Jersey continued to put on a spirited show when down to 14 men,
but Scottish skipper Mark Bright put his side 12-3 up with a catch
and drive try from close range on 26 minutes.
O'Connor was off target from long range after the Jersey pack won a
penalty from the scrum and with Brown now returned Jersey were
still well in the game at the break.
Jersey put on phase after phase in an impressive show immediately
after the interval, but the lack of a cutting edge - and some
superb home defence, it must be said - again left them without
reward. A penalty conceded on their 22-metre line gave Millar the
opportunity to stretch the Exiles' lead to 15-3.
Jersey's realistic hopes of getting a win from the game ended on 52
minutes when Bright carved his way through the visitors' maul
defence, following a line-out, to race clear for his second try on
the right. Millar converted and Jersey were heading for their
biggest defeat of the season.
The eagerness to get something from the game was still there, and a
deal of possession from the line-out gave Jersey the opportunity to
exert more pressure, but again without breaking through. The Jersey
bench was introduced in hopes of sparking a recovery and although
Nicky Griffiths, Latu Maka'afi and James Voss carried well, nothing
of note was built on it.
Scottish just bided their time and waited for a mistake, which came
when James Williams intercepted in his own half and ran deep into
the Jersey half before putting in winger Miles Mantella for an easy
score. The conversion made it 29-3 and optimistic hopes of a late
rally earning a losing bonus were blown away.
That did not stop the Reds trying, however, with Maka'afi held up
over the home line after intense pick-and-go pressure under the
posts. That Jersey kept fighting right to the end was, however, the
sole consolation for the disappointed Jersey fans, who included
three former players from last season, Wasps' Guy Thompson,
Saracens' Richard Barrington and Coventry's Barry Davies.
Jersey, forwards: Sean McCarthy, David Felton,
Dave Young, Dave Markham, Alex Rae (c), Ben Maidment, Joe Buckle,
Tom Brown. Half-backs: Jimmy Williams, Niall O'Connor. Backs: Ed
Dawson, Mark McCrea, Grant Pointer, Mark Foster, Aaron
Jersey replacements: Nicky Griffiths for Williams (53),
Latu Maka'afi for Brown (53); Locke for O'Connor (64); Voss for
Markham (64); Jon Brennan for Young (67); Nick Selway for Felton
(73); Tom Fidler for McCarthy (78).
London Scottish: Eric Fry, Adam Kwasnicki, Tom
Francis, Paul Spivey, Chevvy Pennycook, David Lyons, Neil Best,
Mark Bright; Jordi Herrera Pasqualin, Lee Millar; Miles
Mantella, PJ Gidlow, Oliver Grove, Michael Doneghan, Jim Thompson.
Replacements: Ted Stagg, Mark Irish (Y78), Alex Karonias,
Andy Reay, James Love, Ben Russell.
Man of the match: Pennycook (L Scottish)
Referee: Tom Foley
18 May 2023
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