Late try spells heartbreak for Broadland GY
Broadland GY 11, Wisbech 17
Broadland GY experienced heartbreak as Wisbech crossed the line in the dying minutes of the game, denying the rock-bottom hosts a long overdue first Eastern Counties League Division one win of the season.
Second-placed Wisbech started well and provided some early pressure, but after a number of phases Wisbech broke through to score an unconverted try. This was followed shortly afterwards by a blocked clearance kick which rebounded into the hands of a Wisbech forward, who ran the 10 metres to score.
Broadland got on the scoreboard through a penalty from the boot of full back Stuart Murray. Broadland had some good possession but could not break for a score, and the half concluded with Broadland trailing 10-3.
Murray added a second penalty and had a third go wide as Broadland pushed to get back in the game. Wing Tom Weston had a great break, but unfortunately play was called back for just clipping the try line.
Broadland attacks were coming thick and fast with forwards Mason and Gibbs making some good ground. Broadland’s breakthrough came following a line-out close to the Wisbech line.
Hooker Ant Payne put in a perfect ball, Broadland set the maul. Scrum half Phil Buckley utilised Howley and Morrison to move the ball forward before releasing Ledgerwood and finally flanker Rich Ruddick who slipped through to score (unconverted) for Broadland to take a one point lead with less than five minutes remaining.
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Wisbech had the kick-off and managed to gain possession. A committed pick and drive moved the ball ever closer to the line. The moment of great dispute was the ball going loose. Lock Kieran Wilkes appeared to ground the loose ball dead, but the referee adjudged Wisbech had applied pressure and they were awarded the try which was converted.
Broadland remained focused but could not get clean possession in the final two minutes.
Tries: R Ruddick. Conversion: Murray 0 of 1. Penalties: Murray 2 of 3.
Team: S Murray, L Howlett, S Ledgerwood (capt), S Howley, T Weston, S Ruddick, P Buckley, J Mason, W Gibbs, J Dwyer, K Wilkes, S French, R Ruddick, E Dixon, A Morrison.
Replacements: J Dudley (33 mins), B Collings (48 mins), A Payne (55 mins).
West Norfolk 55, Broadland Tigers 12
Due to injuries and players not being able to travel, Broadland Tigers went to West Norfolk with 14 men.
Having only two front row players meant that it was going to be uncontested in the scrums until the home team kindly lent the visitors a prop. Holding their own against a very big West Norfolk pack gave Broadland a lift and they started to play some great rugby.
However, the home side got on the scoresheet first as the ball came out of the back of a Broadland scrum and West Norfolk were quickest to react to pick up and run it in. The home side started to apply some pressure but Broadland were able to soak this up with some great defensive play from J Stanhope-Smith, J Clarke and N Rose. West Norfolk went further ahead after scoring a great try through their backs. This seemed to spur the Tigers on. J Clarke made a break up the right wing and linked up well with B Trett who was able to return the pass for J Clarke to go over the line by handing off a prop.
The second half started pretty much as the first had ended, but then the full back J Brett went of with a twisted ankle and the Tigers were forced into making some changes.
West Norfolk took advantage and scored three tries in quick succession. The home team were very gracious and the latter part of the game saw three more of the West Norfolk boys putting a Broadland shirt on.
The last score of the game went to the visitors with M White intercepting what would’ve been a try scoring pass and running it all the way up to the oppositions’ 22 metre line, the ball came out to N Rose on the wing for him to go over and score, J Clarke kicked the conversion.
Team: Roger (WN), L Lovick, B Trett, A Vincent, T Swift, P Calnon (capt), D Boyne, N Bensley, R Clarke, M Leckerman, N Rose, J Stanhope-Smith, M White, J Clarke, J Brett.