Isle of Wight 15 Andover 10
It was a day to forget for Oakwood sponsored Andover as a wretched performance saw them miss the chance to climb into one of the Hampshire one promotion spots last Saturday.
In a game played in strong winds and driving rain Andover were given a lesson in heart and resilience by a team who could scarcely believe what unfolded before them.
IOW were meant to be lambs to the slaughter in this game but in the end held on for an unlikely win against an Andover side who looked disjointed and disinterested for much of this game.
Despite their poor display Andover could and should have won comfortably and at the half time break it all seemed to be on track despite some wasteful and casual attacking play.
IOW were restricted to just two penalties for a six nil lead and with the elements in Favour it seemed a second half deluge of pints would follow for the ‘All Blacks.’
What followed however was inexplicable as Andover made error after error and as the half wore on the home side sensed an upset was on the cards.
Andover didn’t learn from the first half and conceded three more kickable penalties to trail by fifteen points and as the Islanders dug deeper and deeper to frustrate their attacks Andover lost their composure.
Andover had almost unbroken possession but failed time and again to turn that into points.
Nic Reed, Paul Tuinsakea and Sam Froggett all went close but some poor decision making let Andover down time and again as time ticked away.
In the end Andover had only a late penalty try awarded by Referee Mike Gill to show for their efforts as the Islanders clung on for victory.
Afterwards Coach Andy Waite was unhappy with what he had seen: “I am shocked at how poor we were today” he said.
“Yes we had late withdrawals and some injuries but the side we had here today was plenty good enough to win and they should be ashamed of that performance.”
“Some of our players need to take more responsibility for what is happening in front of them and be prepared to listen to and carry out instructions.”
“We did some very silly things at key points of the game today and it hurt us badly.”
Next week Andover need to recover quickly at home to Alton if they are to maintain their league challenge.