Hampshire Plate quarter final
Second game of the weekend proves one too many for Southampton
After securing the Hampshire 2 title on Saturday at Stoneham, Southampton might have expected a few celebratory beers on Saturday night.
But instead they found themselves having an early night before playing in their second game of the weekend against Jersey United Banks on Sunday - the second time this year the lads have played two games in a weekend.
The game was tight throughout, with Southampton taking an early lead with a penalty from Ryan Keary. They extended the lead to 8-0 when Doug Barrow crashed through from inside centre and produced a quality offload for Mark Waterer to score.
A missed penalty from Jersey kept things tight, before they hit back with a try from their left winger. They added another in controversial manner when a quick tap penalty opened up the defence - even though Southampton were in the middle of making a replacement. With a 8-17 deficit with ten minutes to go Southampton spent the final minutes camped on the JUB line, with the forwards taking the ball to within 5 yards.
Jersey found themselves defending for their lives and were forced to bring the maul down on a number of occassion - in total seven infringements in the 'red zone' but still the ref felt no need to award a penalty try or sin bin a defender.
Even the near decapitation of Mark Waterer by a high tackle as he was about to ground the ball in the corner was not deemed sufficient for anything more than another penalty.
Jersey held on for the win, in a game that was fiercely competed throughout and might have gone the other way had the ref had a traditional view of red zone infringements.
Credit to Jersey though, who themselves had to overcome an early start and long journey to earn their win.