If ever there was a game that deserved the old hackneyed phrase of “a game of two halves” this was it. The first half was just about all Trojans. Although Eastleigh had the edge in the lines-out and scrums Trojans had enough possession to allow their backs to put in a fine display of running rugby. They linked well with the forwards who rucked and mauled extremely well. They were three points up within three minutes from a Toogi Long penalty and stretched their lead from tries by No 8 Chris Boyd and centre Johnny Smyth, both converted by Toogi and both set up by the forwards rucking and inter passing completed by strong running by the backs. Eastleigh had one of their rare attacks right on half time and were awarded a 5 metre scrum just when prop Marcus Coffin had to go off injured – not the best of times for a replacement prop to come on and Eastleigh made the most of it by scoring a try in the corner.
There was nothing at this stage to foresee what was to come with Trojans seemingly well on top overall. In the early stages of the second half play was fairly even, with Eastleigh putting in some good attacks and Trojans having two long range penalties just going wide. But Eastleigh’s forward dominance increased with Trojans losing their own scrums and getting nothing from the line-out allowing Eastleigh to put the pressure on and on twenty minutes scored a short range try from a line throw having declined a kickable penalty. Ten minutes later Eastleigh’s persistence gained another try which was converted to bring the scores level. Trojans patterns had come apart and Eastleigh were now well on top, highlighted by Trojans losing their own 5 metre scrum and Eastleigh crashing over. And, finally, as if matters couldn’t get any worse, Eastleigh kicked a penalty right on time to rob Trojans of a losing bonus point.