THE NEW year began with a bang as Eastbourne comprehensively overcame Horsham to move the Blue and Golds up to sixth place in the London South East Division Three.
Eastbourne came out the traps much the brighter side as early pressure resulted in turnover ball won by Dominic Groenen and a penalty awarded in Eastbourne’s favour.
Coulthard coolly slotted over with his first points of the afternoon making it 0-3.
Only 10 minutes had been played by the time Eastbourne scored their first try of new year. Excellent forward play and strong, direct running from skipper Joe Tobin enabled winger Walker to go over the line and with Coulthard successful with the kick it took the score to 0-10.
Eastbourne continued to dominate and on 20 minutes they scored their second try of the game.
The Eastbourne forwards won turnover ball at a scrum and the ball popped up to Charlie Smith who sent the supporting Tom Redman over to make it 0-15. Coulthard with a rare miss from the conversion.
Horsham finally managed to get on the scoresheet after 37 minutes with a penalty, although their joy was short-lived as Coulthard hit back with his own almost immdediately from the restart to make it 3-18.
The home side had more to cheer moments later however when a mix up in the Eastbourne backs allowed them back into the game with a converted try.
There was still time on the clock for Coulthard to settle any nerves as he slotted over another penalty to ensure his side went in to the break with a healthy lead 10-21
Eastbourne began the second half in similar fashion to the first; on the front foot and determined to turn the screw and convert pressure into points.
They didn’t have to wait too long as great lineout ball was able to set up a powerful, rolling maul which resulted in the ball being released to the ever-impressive Coulthard to score and then converted his own try just for good measure to push the score to 10-28.
The game as a contest was all but over minutes later when No. 8 Groenen peeled off the back of a scrum and barged his way over. Coulthard adding the extras to make it 10-35.
On the hour Tim Williams caused havoc in the Horsham defence as he scored a neat solo effort which Coulthard converted to increase Horsham’s woes.
With Eastbourne in cruise control, they managed to let Horsham in to score their second try of the match followed by a successful conversion to leave the home side still way arift 17-42 behind.
Fittingly, it was Eastbourne who has the last say as and some excellent passing and slick hands in the backs ended with Gareth Turner going over and despite the conversion being missed the match ended 17-47 in Eastbourne’s favour.
There were a number of fine idividual performances but in the end Coach Stanley chose James Coulthard as man of the match.
Next Saturday sees Eastbourne looking to replicate such a performance at home against Cranbrook.
Team: Baron, Oakey, Webb, Mottram, Tobin (captain) Benniman, Redman, Groenen, Keen, Coulthard, Smith, Williams , Clark, Walker, Turner, Biggins, Imich, Thompson.