Bees 3 Ealing Trailfinders 35
THE start of the rugby season came too early for Bees who were soundly beaten here at Damson Park by last year’s League Two South champions.
The one certainty is that the hastily assembled home squad, relegated from the Championship last season, can only get better as director of rugby and Number 8 Russell Earnshaw acknowledged: “We’ve only just got together and we simply haven’t had time to gel.
“We will improve, we’ve just got to do it quickly and work harder.”
There were bright spots in defeat - Kiwi scrum half Warwick Lahmert was particularly lively while Tom Quarrie at second row proved a useful ball carrier.
Wing forward Chris Brightwell, now back at he Bees after a spell away, also made an impact.
However there was no hiding an underpowered scrum which, under pressure all game, leaked a penalty try right at the start of the second half, and line out which struggled to secure ball.
What ball they won was ponderously slow and although Bees pressed the Ealing line as the game wore on, the visitors already had the match in the bag, and the bonus point too to go top of the league.
“The lack of ball killed us,” admitted Earnshaw, “and we will definitely be working on winning first phase in training.”
On Saturday Bees are away to newcomers Jersey in National League 1 - a team that narrowly lost 29-27 to Fylde last week.
Earnshaw will be looking to win primary possession, hang on to it, and then use it well - preferably with pace.
“Things did get better in the second half when we had the opportunity to play the sort of rugby we’ve been aiming for,” said Earnshaw.
“But let’s not take anything away from Ealing, they were a very good side, who’ve been together a long time and it showed.”