The Western Force came into this game with high hopes having beaten the Jaguares away from home. That was a great victory last time out but the Highlanders are a whole new challenge. Billy Meakes was given the captaincy for this game in his first season at the Force which shows how big of an impact the former Gloucester man has made.
The Highlanders took a lead with Marty Banks striking a penalty but they soon had the first try. Malakai Fekitoa’s dazzling footwork set up Tevita Si for an early score.
Ian Prior notched two penalties for the Force but the Highlanders then got another try. Billy Meakes did superbly to snatch a turnover however, he offloaded and it was intercepted by Aki Seiuli who ran in from close range.
They then got another one in quick succession through Patrick Osbourne who threw a big dummy and ran in from his own half for a great score!
It was turning into a thrashing already and Seiuli got another one when he caught the Force napping and powered over again from short range. A prop with two tries?!
The handling from the Highlanders was tearing the Force apart and they used it again when Matt Faddes quick hands opened up space for Li who gave a perfect over the top pass to Rob Thompson who evaded one tackle and dived in.
The try scorer Thompson then made a lengthy run and was tackled just short of the line. But the Force’s defence was in tatters and Dillon Hunt scooped the ball up for another easy try.
Billy Meakes had been solid in defence but then threw an intercept pass to Richard Buckmann in attack. The inside centre picked off Meakes’ pass and scored the try.
As the clock turned red, the man who had assisted one and scored one, Rob Thompson, snatched his second try when Alex Newsome spilled the ball and the replacement scooped up the loose ball to score and seal and absolute thrashing from the Highlanders!