Debut double for Glister but Saints are outgunned by eight-try Ealing Trailfinders

Will Glister started the scoring for Saints (picture: Adam Gumbs)
Will Glister started the scoring for Saints (picture: Adam Gumbs)

Glister grabbed a try early in both halves, but ambitious Championship side Ealing proved too powerful overall as they secured a bonus-point success in extremely warm conditions.

Saints were hampered by two yellow cards as locks Tom Lockett and Theo Vukasinovic spent time in the sin bin.

And Ealing, who fielded experienced men such as Jordy Reid and Steven Shingler, were ruthless in making them pay as the hosts racked up a total of eight tries.

Saints had headed to Vallis Way missing 14 players due to injuries and international call-ups, and they opted to leave out the majority of their first-team men.

But Phil Dowson's side were ahead early on, having been given a helping hand by their hosts.

Ealing put themselves under huge pressure as fly-half Shingler attempted a crossfield kick inside his own 22, forcing Nathan Earle to knock the ball back and ground it.

Saints got a huge shove on at the resulting scrum, allowing scrum-half Archie McParland to pick up from the base and send wing Glister in out wide.

James Grayson added the extras and it was the ideal start for the black, green and gold.

But Earle soon secured some personal redemption as Saints dropped the kick-off and Ealing stayed patient to send the wing in on the left.

Shingler converted and the scores were level with just four minutes played.

Ealing had completely turned the tables four minutes later as they kicked a penalty to the corner before turning up the heat with the drive, allowing former Saints Academy forward Simon Uzowke to peel away and power over.

Shingler converted to make it 14-7 and Ealing had their tails up, with Sam Graham soon having to do some fine breakdown work to stop another charge.

Saints almost delivered a tidy try in response, but Jake Garside's chip over the defender just bounced into touch before he could get the ball down.

Ealing then responded with another try of their own as Saints left a huge amount of space in the back field and a simple kick ahead found Dan O'Brien, who dotted the ball down.

Shingler converted, but Grayson hit back with a long-range penalty to cut the gap to 11 points.

Ealing tried to extend their lead by kicking a penalty to the corner, but Saints did some strong defensive work to hold them up over the line.

McParland was heavily involved in the attacking action for Saints, but the scrum-half was being tormented by the bounce of the ball on the artificial surface.

A couple of McParland kicks narrowly went long before the No.9 chased a Glister chip ahead, only to see the ball just bounce dead as he ended up bouncing off the advertising boards.

Saints were then reduced to 14 men as Lockett was sin-binned, and Ealing quickly made the away side pay, powering over from a lineout drive, with Mike Willemse the scorer.

Shingler missed the conversion but Ealing would score again before the break, piecing together a flowing move that ended with Earle diving over in the corner.

Shingler again failed to slot the conversion but the gap was a huge 21 points at half-time.

Saints started to eat away at the deficit four minutes into the second period as a lovely lineout move laid the foundation for Tom Litchfield and Grayson to set up Glister for his second score of the game.

Grayson converted with ease but just after Lockett returned from the sin bin, Saints were reduced to 14 men again as Vukasinovic was shown a yellow card for a no-arms hit off the ball.

Ealing quickly powered over for their first score of the second half, with Matt Cornish the beneficiary.

Shingler again sent the conversion wide before Grayson did some sterling work to stop Ealing scoring another, getting a hand under the ball to prevent Reid celebrating a try.

But Ealing did go over when full-back Cian Kelleher pinned his ears back and spotted a gap to score.

Shingler hit the post with the conversion but the gap was a whopping 24 points and there were still 22 minutes to play.

Glister thought he had a hat-trick when he charged over the line following nice work from George Hendy, but the TMO spotted a knock-on in the build-up and it was no try.

Matthew Arden and Glister teamed up to stop Earle scoring out wide before Saints forced their way over at the other end, Cruse profiting from a powerful lineout drive.

Grayson sent the conversion to the left of the posts, and Ealing had another try before the end as Jonah Holmes raced in out wide.

Bruce Houston had no problem adding the extras as the hosts celebrated a big win.

Ealing Trailfinders: Kelleher (Bodilly 64); Holmes, O’Brien, Bird-Tulloch, Earle; Shingler (Houston 72), Hampson (Burns 70); Goodrick-Clarke (Tyrer 44), Willemse (Cornish 40), Roots (Davis 44); de Wee, Maddison (c); Reid, Uzokwe (Newman 50), Smid (Lindsell 73).

Saints: Baker (Arden 40); Garside, Hendy, Litchfield, Glister; Grayson, McParland; Waller (Millar Mills 45), Wright (Cruse 32), Hill (Prowse 40); Vukasinovic, Lockett (Atuanya 59); Graham (c) (Sylvester 55), Pollock (Irvine 70), Moore-Aiono.

Referee: Dan Jones