Two sides who are both the amateur arms of a Championship club came together at Dillingham Park for a Raging Bull Shield fixture and a close affair it was.
Ealing have used over 60 players so far this season – around double the Jets and it was just our luck that they had their best available 21 in their squad this week.
Ealing started strong with a clear dominance at scrum time and on another day may have won several scrum penalties, the ref being particularly kind to the Jets pack. Against the early run of play, a piece of individual magic from scrum-half Isaac Carlos Jabri saw a score by full-back James Kearns (shirt sponsor Castle Lane Garage) for a 5-0 lead.
It was as a result of the Ealing forward power with several pick and go’s which saw the equaliser for Ealing, and a 5-5 half time score. The first half also saw the introduction of substitute Phil Lane, a former Ampthill Club captain.
The 2nd half started well for Ampthill and a try by captain Eric Edwin (shirt sponsor CJ Drylining), was converted by fellow centre Will Norford (shirt sponsor RD Designs) and Ampthill now led 12-5. Soon after a real turning point in the match, replacement fly-half Colin Liddell saw Norford take a great angled run and he broke to close to the Ealing line. The final pass for what seemed like a certain Ampthill try went to an Ealing defender and 30 seconds later they had run the length of the field for an equalizing converted try. So 12-12 and a tight game. Only one more score and it was via a penalty kick by Ealing for a 15 12 win.
So not to be for the Jets but a good match, referee decisions went both ways so we can’t complain about that. It’s coming and with greater attendance at training a win will come soon. Great energy by young second-row partnership Burton and Smith but the man of the match this week is Jabs (shirt sponsor Wardown Engineering).
The Jets are away next week at Leicester Lions and then at home to Maidenhead on Sat 22nd February.