Strong Sarnians wrestle Siam from Jersey

Scrum-half Max Harrington looks to start a renewed attack from a Jersey ruck Picture: MARTIN GRAY

GUERNSEY RAIDERS regained the Siam Cup after a thumping 49-33 victory.

The Sarnians scored seven tries in a dominant display in front of their home fans at Footes Lane, reminding the Jersey contingent why they played two divisions above them this season.

“It certainly wasn’t the result we were after,” said Jersey captain Jack Macfarlane.

“These games mean so much to both Islands and we are gutted to have lost it this year. We just didn’t maintain periods of pressure for long enough.”

It took the home side just seven minutes to open the scoring, as the Raiders used their width and precise, fast passing to stretch the Jersey back line for the pacey winger Ethan Smith to score.

Midway through the first half, it looked as if Guernsey were going to run away with the contest, after further tries from Hugo Culverhouse and an excellent solo run from debutant Niall McGann.

The visitors stood strong, however, and nicked two tries back before the break through a double from full-back Charlie Hubert after 25 minutes and 37 minutes, but the eventual player-of-the-match, Ciaran McGann, scored his first of a hat-trick of tries before the break to give the Raiders a 28-14 lead at half-time.

“We just gave away too many easy opportunities,” said head coach Myles Landick.

“Especially conceding straight after the restart, that really slowed the momentum we had built at the back end of the first half.”

As the second half began, it couldn’t have started worse for the visitors. It took just 39 seconds for Ciaran McGann to intercept a long pass out wide and dash clear for the easiest of tries.

The hat-trick was secured just two minutes later in very similar fashion, extending the margin to 42-14.

“What I can say with pride is that we didn’t give up,” said Landick.

“We knew Guernsey would be tough and we expected a real test. But we did make errors that let them in too easily.

“We proved that we have the capability to score against them, which is why the errors were extra costly. We just let them get ahead by too much.”

Captain Macfarlane pulled one back for the men in red before substitute and former Jersey Reds scrum-half James Mitchell touched down just beyond the hour mark to halve the deficit. But it was too little too late for the travelling Caesareans.

Jamie Dunn, on debut for the Raiders, scored their seventh try of the contest to kill any faint hope of a Jersey comeback.

Scott Van Breda did manage one final consolation score for Jersey with the game’s final play, but the match had very much been Guernsey’s throughout.

Earlier in the day, however, The Nash Cup went the way of the Sarnians 36-12, but the Jersey Men’s 2nd XV regained the Fallaize Cup with 28-24 win in a close-fought spectacle between the Channel Islanders.

“I’m super proud of those boys,” continued Landick.

“They were all buzzing with that performance and I thought they defended particularly well. To do that on away soil in front of a big Guernsey crowd was extremely impressive.”

More reaction from Siam Cup day to follow.

JRFC Men’s 1st XV Siam Cup squad [1-15]: George Thomas, Jack Macfarlane (cc), Thomas Wilson, Max Ayling, Euan Spencer, Jerry Sexton, Tim Corson, George Willmott, Max Harrington, Aaron Penberthy, Nathan Rogers, Scott Van Breda (cc), Dom Mayo, Sam Harvey, Charlie Hubert. Replacements: Joel Ridgway, Gene Syminton, Ewan Davies, Tom Tilstone, James Mitchell, Tom Bulfin.

JRFC Men’s 2nd XV Fallaize Cup squad [1-15]: Jake Bates (c), Andrew Pitcher, Harvey Evans, Nathan Thomas, James Guyatt, Cameron Halliwell, Jack Preston, Cameron Queree, Callum Cuthbert, Mark Boarer, Tom Pinel, Brian Njomba, Jacques de la Bat, Billy Mullins, Charlie Best. Replacements: James Kent, Joao Thomas, Sam Gott, Lewis Ham-Howes, Ethan Huish.

JRFC Veterans XV Nash Cup squad[1-15]: Ben France, Doc Snook, Daniel Curzons, Justin Hewgill, Rory Steel, Curtis Stanier, Peter Haworth, Matthew Cook, David Sion Williams, Rupert Lee, David Wilton, Guy Thompson, Stuart Geddes, James Long, Christian Weald. Replacements: John James Le Feuvre, Samuel Dillon, Thibaud Calohard, Joshua Twohig-Jones, Mariota Smutz.

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