Old Pats snatch victory away
Pats make it 2 from 2
Pats followed an impressive bonus point home win against Oxford Harlequins with a gutsy away win in appalling conditions at Ballards Ash getting their 2017 / 2018 South West One East campaign off to a near perfect start.
With a howling wind on their backs the visitors faced an early onslaught from the Wiltshire men as their young back looked to seize the advantage but the well organised Pats defence sustained the attack and excellent work on the ground from Tom Langton saw the ball continually turned over.
Pats cleared their lines and when a scrum on the Bassett 22 was adjudged to have been collapsed James Aherne nudged over for three points after 15 minutes. Following a scrum on halfway Pats produced a superb try, after shoving 10 meters into the home side’s half a pick and drive from burly Frenchman Scott Alldritt saw him find ever alert Darren Moore who darted forwards and found Matt Dean on a burst and when speedster Jimmy Gahan found a gap he released his wing partner Duncan Spurrier who dabbed down in the corner. With Aherne off injured Dean stepped up and produced a remarkable conversation from the touchline.
Pats superior scrum and dominant line out gave them ample possession but all too often, risky off loads saw the ball spilled and a lack of accuracy wasted numerous scoring chances.
Thunder roared and the heavens opened as the second half got underway, in the wind and rain it was the Wiltshire men who were to test Pats defence throughout the half. Pats Josh Stevens was imperious in the line out stealing ball at will and Langton was menacing at the breakdown. Clearing their line Pats threatened through Gahan and his power and pace forced a penalty and the reliable boot of Dean bisected the uprights.
When Moore broke free 25 metres out the consummate scrum half was scraged by the shirt thwarting a certain try. Camped in their own half for the rest of the match Pats dogged defence denied the homeside time and again with skipper George Angel leading the way and with Stevens, Alldritt, Langton, Jasper Frost and Haydn Jennings standing firm there was no way through as the homeside were twice held. When Pats were caught offside on their 22 the men in black & white were rewarded with a penalty as full time approached.
In their next outing, Pats face top of the table newcomers to the league Salisbury at Everest Road in what proves to be a thrilling encounter.