Battling Broadland denied in hunt for elusive win

Broadland-GY 19 Ely 22

Bottom-of-the-table Broadland put in a strong challenge but fell just short of claiming their first Eastern Counties Division One win of the season against visitors Ely.

Broadland started with some positive attacks, but Ely’s defence held firm, and both sides spent the early part of the match playing a territorial game. Ely were first on the scoreboard with a penalty. This was followed shortly after when Ely broke to score a converted try. Broadland were moving the ball well, and Props Jerome Mason and Jimmy Dwyer were both making a big impact in tight play.

Broadland came close near the end of the half to scoring but a well -taken drop goal by Full Back Stuart Murray drifted a metre wide of the uprights. Broadland were trailing 10-0 at the half

The second half did not start well for Broadland as Ely exploited some space in midfield to score a converted try, followed shortly after by a second try. Broadland’s tempo increased, Stacey Ledgerwood and Sean Howley made some good ground and moved the ball into Ely’s 22 metre line. Ely managed to gain possession but flanker Richard Ruddick managed to block the kick and send the ball high over the try line, a number of players converged on the ball but it was Simon Ruddick who managed to collect and touch down (converted Murray).

Broadland were reduced to 14 men, when Jerome Mason was given a yellow, but this did not slow momentum. Ed Dixon picked up from the base of the scrum, Adam Towfighi and Asa Morrison secured quick position, Weston carried on before Ben Collings was released down the wing.

He kicked through to touchdown and score, converted Murray. Broadland were playing with real intensity but time was running out.

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Wayne Gibbs had a half break in midfield and a chip and chase forced Ely to clear to touch.

Ant Payne put in a solid throw to James Dudley in the line-out, scrum half Buckley called in the forwards, as the pack surged from five metres out, Sam French was able to roll inside with Kieran Wilkes and Ant Payne driving him over the line to score (unconverted).

Tries: S Ruddick, B Collings, S French

Conversions : Murray 2 of 3

DG : S Murray 0 of 1.

Team: S Murray, T Weston, S Ledgerwood(Capt ), S Howley, B Collings, S Ruddick, P Buckley, J Dwyer, A Payne, M Jerome, S French, A Morrison, E Ruddick, E Dixon, A Towfighi

Replacements: W Gibbs (40 mins) J Dudley (55 Mins), K Wilkes(69 mins)

Holt III 62 Broadland Tigers 14

The game started with uncontested scrums as Broadland didn’t have a full front row and with clean ball at the back of the scrums the Holt backs were able to run at the inexperienced Tigers back line and run in two quick tries.

Great defensive play by A Lightfoot at fly half kept the score down as well as some try saving tackles by man of the match T Barber who was playing in the unfamiliar role of fullback. The Tigers never let their heads drop and were rewarded for their efforts when a back row move saw N Bensley pick up from the base of the scrum and pass to his dad A Bensley to offload in the tackle to the ever present L Moorehouse to inject some pace and run around to score, converted by A lightfoot.

The second half was much like the first with the Holt back line running hard at the Tigers backs, and Broadland went down to 14 men due to an injury.

Broadland were rewarded as A Lightfoot put a pass out to T Barber who ran at the gap and broke through to round off an excellent individual performance. Lightfoot slotted the conversion.

Team: A Riches, L Lovick, P Calnon, A Vincent, D Boyne Jnr, N Bensley, L Moorehouse, A Bensley, P Finney, A Lightfoot, J Symonds, C Calnon, J Williamson, J Chaplin-Madden, T Barber.