THERE was high drama on the Channel Islands after the league-leading Hurricanes were pipped at the death on Saturday.


Guernsey came out all guns blazing, seizing an early lead.

Isle of Wight County Press: Luke Wedderkop stood out with his performance against Guernsey II.Luke Wedderkop stood out with his performance against Guernsey II. (Image: County Press)

However, Sandown didn't roll over — showing their determination and grit.

Antony Burr did his part, skillfully scoring a penalty for the Hurricanes, to narrow the score to 7-3 and inject some momentum into the Islanders' game.

Sadly, the Hurricanes had to soldier on without Burr, when he exited the game with a broken nose.

Nonetheless, Sandown regrouped effectively against a ruthless Guernsey attack.

The opening quarter was lopsided in Guernsey’s favour, with the adverse pitch conditions adding another layer of difficulty for both teams.

Undaunted, the Hurricanes switched to an aggressive forward carrying game, but Guernsey still managed to exploit a chink in Sandown's armour, extending their lead to 14-3.

Facing a steep climb, the Hurricanes made a comeback through an impressive team try, masterminded by captain Jacob Jordan, bringing the score to 14-10.

Sandown's Zak Chiverton and Michael Barrett were formidable forces, as they charged into Guernsey's defences.

Hurricanes' George Finan, assisted by Tom Marriott and Damien Seder, then managed to put the team ahead 15-14 right on half-time.

The second half was as fiercely competitive as the first, with neither side giving an inch.

Stepping up their game, the Hurricanes soon benefitted from Rob Eston's precision pass, which allowed Sam Tyson to score — stretching their lead by an additional eight points.

The game then descended into a nerve-wracking stand-off in the final 20 minutes.

The Hurricanes' Luke Wedderkop stood out with his dynamic attempts to outmanoeuvre Guernsey.

Despite this, Guernsey bagged an additional four points, leading 26-22.

Ultimately, after a series of power plays, Hurricanes' Ash Smith managed to flip the script with a crucial try, putting them ahead 27-26 with just minutes to spare.

Despite Sandown's final push, Guernsey turned the tide with a penalty conversion, snatching victory.

Damien Marriott, the Hurricanes' director of rugby, said: "I’m extremely proud of the boys' efforts.

"The conditions were very tough, but we continued to play some fantastic rugby — coming home with two bonus points, which will be huge come the end of the season.

"The ball is still in our court and we know what we have to do."