The Hurricanes started and elected to have the sun to their backs and Eastleigh got the game underway with a high looping kick that came tumbling down in the Hurricanes 22. The ball was recovered by the visiting winger who rose high enough to claim the high ball and who surged toward the try line, coming only inches away from scoring straight off the kick-off. However, after a period of testing each other out and the game settling into a rhythm, it was the home side that started edging the contest.
The Hurricanes turned the ball over in the centre of the park with some excellent work from Dan Sayers and Neil Adcock at the breakdown. This gave the home side their first attacking platform to move the ball away from the ruck. Captain Liam Little, got a good pass out to Sothcott who was able to feed hooker Ben Kulik on the inside to crash through two tackles, one because of his awesome angled run and the second man was handed off powerfully and unable to make a challenge. Kulik went through to round the fullback and score, Tom Borrer added the extras, 7 – 0. Three more tries came in quick succession, before the end of the first half. The first from Man of the Match, Sam Buckingham, followed by a score from Zak Chiverton and the third coming from evergreen flanker Sam Dawson, put the Hurricanes in the driving seat at half time, 26 – 0. The half was then called one minute early due to the injuries.
Because so many players were injured Eastleigh asked the game be shortened to 60 minutes. The hosts also kindly lent the visitors some players to make up their numbers. After the restart, Sothcott decided to get in on the act and went over for his first try of the season, 33 – 0. Sam Rees added another try, following some great play by prop Martin Richomme, 38 – 0. A further two tries from the kick-off put the game beyond Eastleigh in this abridged format. The first was an excellent take by Dan Sayers. The score now, 45 – 0 with the conversion form Borrer. The second was a try for Richomme, 50 – 0.
A second-half hat-trick was completed for Sam Buckingham when the home side managed to spin the ball out wide to the backs. Then using his pace Buckingham ran one into the corner, then off the restart. A similar move off the restart occurred again but this time Buckingham passed to Charles Little close to the line to score 60 – 0. As the game was nearing a close, Sayers went on another strong run to score, 65 – 0. Michael Cooper made an early start for the 2’s this season and even though not at full fitness managed to get in the tries and even converted his own to put the scores at 72 – 0. The final act of the game was a well-worked game that saw two runners charge inside fooling the Eastleigh defence however the ball was floated out to Buckingham who obliged and trundled over to make it 77 – 0.
Sandown & Shanklin RFC 2nd XV 77 | 0 Eastleigh RFC 3rd XV
The next game is a local derby against Ventnor RFC 2nd XV at the Fairway, kick-off at 15:00.
The full match report is available on the SSRFC website.