Folkestone started off with a bang and within sixteen minutes were 21 points ahead.
This reminded spectators of the last game of last season when Folkestone were away to Dunstonian and the score alternated between the sides to see Folkestone emerge winners after a close game 33-29. What surprises would the second half hold?
Folkestone 1stXV 33 Old Dunstonian 1stXV 27
Saturday 30th September 2017. London 3SE Report by Steve Hughes.
Our chief scribe (Scuffers) has delegated the responsibility for this week’s report to me but insists that I inform his readers that Old Dunstonian are one of the oldest clubs in Kent (1903) being surpassed by Blackheath (1858), Ashford (1885), Park House (1883) and more than likely more Kent Clubs! There endeth today’s history lesson!
This was a game that Folkestone needed to win, lying 11th out of 12 in the League table after last weeks game was snatched out from under their noses by two disputed decisions by the officials. As points are scarce at the lower end of the League, to have won that match would have put Folkestone mid-table as today’s win shows placing them now in 7th place.
Folkestone again fielded a changed side with Veteran Adam Bloomfield at No.2, Kyle Deakin at No. 9, Jake Ellis at No 5 and Seyhan Fell and Adam Tolman at 14 and 15 respectively.
Folkestone started off with a bang and within sixteen minutes were 21 points ahead. First Guy Carney made a break down the middle resulting in a loose maul in the visitors red zone. Jack Brooks was fed the ball and burst through the defence to score under the posts, which Seyhan Fell converted. 7 - 0. Then Folkestone won a loose maul on the right to see John Eustace throw a long 'miss-pass' which found Guy Carney who put Adam Tolman away to score - converted by Seyhan Fell. 14 - 0. Guy Carney was again instrumental in starting the next move when he fed Adam Tolman who put Jack Brooks over for his second try - again converted by Seyhan Fell. 21 - 0.
Guy Carney was involved in all three tries. He is a youngster at 18 years of age and new to senior rugby but the transition from Junior to Senior level has not phased him at all. He's not a big lad but has a quality pass, has the eye for an opening and punches above his weight in the tackle.
Dunstonian managed to get a look-in when they were awarded a penalty. 21-3 and then scored a try by hacking the ball through the home defence to win the touch-down which was converted 21 - 10.
From both kick offs, Seyhan Fell collected the ball cleanly to put Folkestone in an attacking position but unfortunately then suffered from a pulled hamstring and the reshuffle saw Michael Gardner in the centre with Captain Jon Morton moving to the wing.
Pressure by Folkestone won them a kickable penalty but instead to taking the points they elected to take a scrum which didn't produce any tangible result. That decision could have come to haunt them in the closing minutes when there was only one point between the sides.
It was apparent that when forced to defend, Folkestone were often found to have forwards in the three quarters line when the three-quarters were caught in a maul or ruck. Dunstonian were able to exploit this just before half time when they created an overlap to score another converted try.
Half time score 21 - 17.
The visitors had crept back into the game with some quality moves and were within one score which reminded spectators of the last game of last season when Folkestone were away to Dunstonian and the score alternated between the sides to see Folkestone emerge winners after a close game 33-29. What surprises would the second half hold?
Jack Brooks started off the second half as he did the first with a clean break down the middle of the park only to get dragged down just short of the line. However he was able to off-load to Josh Holt who was up in support to score under the posts which Jon Morton converted 28 -17. John Eustace and Sam Beech were causing havoc when taking the ball forward and both were sound in defensive. The whole home three-quarter line were enterprising and entertaining with some delightful passing and off-loading with Jon Morton playing the Captains role with enthusiasm.
Old Dunstonian were not giving up and caused panic in the home ranks on occasions and by gaining a penalty, 28-20. Then another 'overlap' try took them to within one point with just minutes to go. 28-27.
Folkestone brought on Mason Colchester-Long and Scott Stewart and the latter had his moment of glory when he snatched the ball out of a ruck and burst away to see the ball pass through the hands of Guy Carney, John Eustace, Jon Morton and Kyle Deakin and onto Josh Holt who proceeded to weave his way 80 metres upfield through despairing OD’s tackles until being brought down about 15 metres from the try line, however Thomas Snare was on hand to eventually crash over near the corner flag. The conversion was missed but no one cared as the final whistle blew for full time 33-27.
The win gave Folkestone the four League points it sorely needed plus a bonus point for scoring four tries. An entertaining game but nail biting at times when the visitors raised their game.
Team: Adam Tolman; Seyhan Fell, Jon Morton (Capt), Jack Brooks, Josh Holt; Guy Carney, Kyle Deakin; Thomas Snare, Adam Bloomfield, Bob Porter, Jake Ellis, Kieran Smith, Sam Beech, Jeremie Cowell, John Eustace.
Subs: Scott Stewart, Michael Gardner and Mason Colchester-Long.
Scorers: Jack Brooks 5, 5; Seyhan Fell 2, 2, 2; Adam Tolman 5; Josh Holt 5; Jon Morton 2; Thomas Snare 5.