If ever there was someone looking for a Cinderella Story in Cayman rugby then they should look no further than the Queensgate Pigs Trotters.
The Trotters, who had not won a XVs game in over two years, finished last in this year’s Alex Alexander Memorial Trophy Season. They faced the current league champions the DHL Cayman Storm in a first versus fourth place play off to see who would march into the DART Vase final and won in emphatic fashion 27-5.
The DHL Storm, having started the 2011-12 season with a dominant 48-5 win over the Krys Global Buccaneers, declined markedly in the second half of the season to need a late comeback against the Pigs Trotters to avoid embarrassment, lose to the Buccaneers and finally struggle against a 12 man Iguana side.
The game started brightly for the Storm who camped out in the Pigs Trotters half of the pitch and had the first shot at points but the strong onshore breeze made kicking a treacherous prospect for Storm flyhalf Michael Sumares. His counterpart Marco du Plessis had little difficulty at the other end when his team turned the tide and marched downfield into Storm territory and never looked back.
Whilst the usually solid Pigs Trotters pack was pressured at the scrum by the DHL Storm every other aspect of the Pigs game was in the ascendancy. Indeed the first try for the Pigs came from a lineout drive with captain Doug Anderson crossing the line. The dogged Pigs Trotters defence turned the Storm over at the breakdown and stopped the dangerous running of Keswick Wright and Vanassio Tokotokovanua at all the important moments.
Being 18-0 down at the half and after a strong talking to from DHL Storm coach Steve Clarke many expected to see yet another DHL Storm comeback but an early Iain Curry try in the second half hammered home the Pigs desire to not see this game slip out of their grasp as had been the case on more than one occasion this season.
As the game wound down the DHL Storm, knowing that overcoming a 27-0 deficit was a nearly impossible feat, looked instead to avoid a shut-out loss and thanks to the strong running of late substitute Baron Solomon set up an unconverted try to bring up the final score of 27-5.
With the Queensgate Pigs Trotters now set to face the in-form Krys Global Buccaneers in the DART Vase final there will be much debate on whether the Pigs Trotters can maintain this new found desire and resilience to raise their first trophy since 2007. Next game is on Saturday at the Cayman Islands Rugby Club:
3.3pm: Krys Global Buccaneers v Queensgate Pigs Trotters (DART Vase Final)