Navy Flying High After Inter Service Win


RN Senior XV


RAF Senior Men

Photo Credit: Alligin Photography
Photo Credit: Alligin Photography
Photo Credit: Alligin Photography
Photo Credit: Alligin Photography
Photo Credit: Alligin Photography
Photo Credit: Alligin Photography
Photo Credit: Alligin Photography
Photo Credit: Alligin Photography

The Royal Navy Men ground out a victory against the RAF in Ealing to ensure that Army v Navy will be a winner takes all encounter for the Inter Service Championship.

Taking to the field after the Women and the Mariners, the Men knew that they stood in the way of a Royal Air Force clean sweep and they converted their dominant performance into an 18-10 victory.

Off the back of good results and with Fijian and Northampton Saints hooker Logs(SC) Sam Matavesi packing down at number 8 the Royal Navy men were confident heading into the match. Their pace, power and phase play ensured that they were always threatening but all to often during the match small mistakes meant that the Navy were not able to convert their pressure into points. Surgeon Lieutenant Henry Hughes had other ideas though and on his debut he sniffed space and was able to dive over the RAF tryline. AET Jordon Gott missed the conversion but was able to nudge over a penalty to take the Navy’s lead out to 8. 

But the RAF were not going to go down without a fight and Lock Alex Stanley was able to dot down for a converted try after a series of pick and goes and that looked to give the Navy the most slender of advantages going into half time. That was until AB Jess Lowe used his powerful fend to make a hole and sprint for the corner from quite a way out to make the half time score 13-7. 

The second half was a battle for the middle ground with both teams trying to gain territory but settling for possession away around the half way line. The RAF narrowed the gap with a penalty and the Navy again managed to miss chances, notably when Sam Matavesi’s pass to open winger, POAET Chambers, fell short and gave the RAF the chance to crab acoss and tackle the man from 846 Naval Air Squadron into touch. 

It was AB Jesse Lowe who again scored the points when the Navy needed them. His late second half score put the Navy out of immediate reach and a more settled Senior side were able to see the match out with an 8 point margin of victory.

Sam Matavesi said his highlight was simply getting the win, “The RAF are a really good team and it took 80 minutes to beat them.” He praised the Navy’s resilience, saying “Our defence won the game and it’s a massive step forward for the next game against the Army.”

The Royal Navy Men will now return to their camp in Somerset where they will be conducting their final preparations for their next match, at Twickenham, against the Army on the 30th of April.


1 LAET Beasley (HMS Sultan)

2 LPT Priddey (RNAS Culdrose)

3 LA Watson (1700 NAS)

4 Cpl Pascoe (RM Band, CTCRM)

5 MNE Papp (CLR)

6 Lt Spence RN (MOD Abbey Wood)

7 Hayler RM (CTCRM) (C)

8 Logs Matavesi (RNAS Culdrose)

9 AB Rees (Swansea AFCO)

10 AET Gott (846 NAS)

11 POAET Chambers (846 NAS)

12 Raumakita (42 Cdo)

13 Lowe (HMNB Devonport)

14 Surg Lt Hughes RN (INM, Alverstoke)

15 MNE Duncan (30 Cdo)


16 LET Ives (HMS Sultan)

17 LAET Warner (824 NAS)

18 LS Kirwan (MIXG)

19 MNE Mitchell (40 Cdo)

20 AB Hughan (TDG)

21 LAET Carter (RNAS Culdrose)

22 AET Rutter (RNAS Culdrose)

23 AET Rudder (1710 NAS)

The full public gallery can be accessed here.