Recent results, media reports and conversations with mutual opponents have indicated that the men from Surrey are, to say the least, going in the right direction this season. Saturday’s match proved it as Esher’s six try to three performance ensured everyone in this league will pay serious attention before tangling with an outfit who look set fair to top the heap before long.
Head Coach Dan George was unequivocal in his post match statement when he said Esher were, by a distance, the best side his charges have faced all season. There is no arguing with pace and, even though Albanians have some serious gas front and back no less than four of the host’s tries came from backs including all of the back three. Esher played with their heads up and their confidence grew as the match wore on.
The first period was relatively even and Elliott McPhun and Alex Noot had their smart efforts improved by Dan Watt for the side to trail by just three points. Then, in the Home dressing room, someone pressed the loud pedal and the Esher machine gradually, but inexorably pulled away. Fully seventeen points were added in virtually the third quarter and, as a contest, the day was done at this point. Manfully OAs fought back and Alex Ricci sadly suffered a dislocated shoulder when crossing ten minutes from the end. Watt’s conversion was little consolation for the winger’s loss.
Leicester Lions travel to Woollams next Saturday and, since Albanians dropped two league places the two opponents are pretty much adjacent in the table. We shall see how much Chris West’s men have taken on board.