Guernsey Press

‘We’re being dragged into relegation battle’

RAIDERS are being dragged into a relegation battle.

A rare moment of success for Guernsey Raiders on Saturday as co-captain Lewis Hillier finds his way through a crowd of players to give his side the lead. (Picture by Martin Gray,

That was the view of Jordan Reynolds on Saturday when his side’s performance was as grim as the weather as Canterbury deservedly won 34-10 at Footes Lane to make it four defeats in a row for Guernsey.

‘We didn’t look comfortable at all today, just looked a little bit panicky around what we’re doing and that’s probably a little bit of their pressure and a little bit of our pressure on ourselves just snowballing,’ said the Raiders coach.

‘I think that probably puts us in a relegation battle now and maybe that will be the tide that turns us.

‘It’ll be a really big week next week up at North Walsham. We didn’t beat them up there last season. So we’ve probably got a lot to look forward to. But it’s going to be tough.’

Raiders had taken the lead against Canterbury through a Lewis Hillier try, but by half-time they trailed by five points and never looked like getting back in the contest after the interval, with Ciaran McGann’s late score merely a consolation.

‘Even when we played the best sides here, like Blackheath, there was a 50-50 battle, and I don’t think it was today, and that probably says a lot about where we are,’ Reynolds said.

‘It’s not everyone, you know, you’ve got guys like Dom Rice out there killing guys [in the tackle] for fun, but we’re just not getting it across the park.

‘At half-time we said with the wind we could kick it away, but it hadn’t worked for us, so we decided to run it. The issue was, as I said to the backs [after the game], we didn’t complete a back-line move until the last 15 minutes of the game, so we probably overplayed.

‘It would have been good if we just carried one a little bit further in and just kept building phases, but ultimately we had to change our plan pretty quickly.

‘I don’t think that was the defining factor. I think probably that first half really killed us and after that it was just a slow death.’

• Match report in Monday's Guernsey Press.