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Kent Exiles 14 Essex Spartans 0

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Kent Exiles got off to a winning start at their new home ground on Sunday.

Playing their first game at Oxford Road, the Exiles bounced back from their opening two defeats with head coach Tony Bainbridge implementing a new tactical approach.

The home defence laid the foundations of victory with Jon Dwyer and Adam Pearson making tackles on plays time and again, while the offence moved the ball without threatening the end-zone.

Unusually, the game was goalless at half-time and the third period carried on in the same fashion, with defences again dominating.

Finally, the ball began to move in the fourth quarter. Quarter-back Zac Ritchie found Jon Miller, Nick Thompson and Ennis Alashimi with passes and Kieron Woolmer ran the ball well to set up Ritchie’s pass to Colin Chislett to score from 11 yards out.

Brad McManus kicked the extra point and put the Exiles seven points up.

With the defence in fine form the Spartans struggled to move the ball, allowing Ritchie and the home offence to take over again.

This time Wesley Eversley and Miller made the catches, to once again set up a Ritchie pass to Chislett for the second score.

McManus again hit the extra point to make it 14-0 with under two minutes remaining.

Coach Bainbridge said: “That was a much better performance, against an always tough opponent.

“The changes we made worked well and we had some players step up.

“We’ll now look to take this momentum into our home game against the Cambridgeshire Cats in two weeks’ time.”

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