Late Woodbridge rally falls short in home defeat to West Norfolk
- Credit: Archant
London 3 East Woodbridge Warriors 19 West Norfolk 30 A late Woodbridge charge was too late, as the points went back across the border, writes Simon Ballard.
West Norfolk started belligerently, from an early line-out big lock Adam Fox forced the Warriors back into their 22 and set the agenda for a busy forwards day.
Scrum half Hayden Revell squirrelled cross-field to set up a scrum and No8 Edney Costa picked and drove back. Woodbridge defence held, No8 Aldis Salavejs ran from deep but the respite was short-lived as first wing Steve Aspery attacked the left and then quick hands saw centre Freddie Playford score wide on the right.
With fly-half Sam Moses kicking well Norfolk took another three penalty points. But, from the restart, Woodbridge No 10 JP Hart gathered and sprinted 40m under the posts for a cheeky try against a confused West Norfolk.
Prop Paul Bridges and Fox responded by bashing their way through some uncharacteristically desultory tackling to besiege the home try-line where an intense pick-and-drive fest set up an attacking scrum, from which Aspery scored.
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There was worse to come for the home side too, as a chip from Hart was intercepted by Aspery who scampered 80 metres to score his second before the break.
After the interval, Norfolk’s forwards took the ball up to the Warrior line again and this time Moses scored. Moments later another onslaught yielded Moses another three penalty points as the home team remained under pressure.
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Woodbridge got back in it when, with Ed Banthorp and Tim Johnson grafting at the breakdowns, wing Reece Monk combined with full-back Luke Wattam on the left before the ball was recycled right and Felix Kibble scored.
Boosted by this late return on investment the Warriors attacked again, Hart finishing a move with an offload to Wattam who scored.
Johnson and hard-working scrum half Adam Plummer got the crowd going with another charge, but the comeback was too late and West Norfolk survived as worthy winners.