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Aldeburgh v Mistley 2

14th October – Mistley

Result: Harwich 21 - Aldeburgh 33

A convincing bonus point win

From the start, Aldeburgh took the initiative with early attacks which so nearly led to scores. Their speed of movement gave them an advantage but the size and power of Mistley’s pack made this a close encounter until the final stages.

The first try came when Ed Robson switched from open to blind to receive quick ball from a ruck from new scrum half, Fred Precious, then cut back inside to go over for a superb individual try which he then converted. Mistley then had a period of pressure with a series of powerful runs by their big forwards, eventually being held up over the line. As well as their big forwards, they also had a big No 13 who finally broke through to score under the posts. Another conversion.

After about half an hour, loose head prop, Charlie Ginn, playing his first game for the club, had to leave the field injured. Mistley insisted on providing a front row replacement so that scrums could continue to be contested. Although the replacement made a good contribution throughout the rest of the match, the change seemed to disrupt Aldeburgh’s play. A Mistley player ran half the length of the pitch breaking several tackles. Despite being hauled down close to the line, the big No 13 was able to go over for his second try which was again converted.

Having dominated through most of the first half, Aldeburgh found themselves trailing by 14-7. The momentum was changed again by Ed Robson making a break then putting in a huge kick which Mistley scrambled to defend resulting in a 5 metre scrum. From the ruck which followed the scrum, Jon Hunt, in the second row for his first game of the season, burst over down the blind side.

Ed soon made another intervention with a great kick to take advantage of the new 50-22 rule. Aldeburgh won the resulting line out. From the ruck the ball came again to Jon Hunt who this time threw an outrageous dummy to beat the defence. Ed converted again to give Aldeburgh a 21-14 half time lead.

A positive start to the second half saw a powerful run by outside centre Callum Goodwin, having another strong game, followed by excellent interplay between forwards and backs down the blind side which gave Fred Precious the space to run round under the posts to score.

Aldeburgh were dominant for a period. No 8 Chris Outten led the charge but his final pass to the winger went astray. From a quickly recycled ball, Ed Robson cut back in to make a break but was stopped just short of the line. Pressure was not being turned into points. Throughout the match, Aldeburgh’s play was stifled by losing turnover ball. It happened too many times for them to impose themselves as they would have liked.

As a result, there was a long period without a score during which Mistley gradually began to get on top. The big No 13 completed his hat trick with yet another burst through the centre. It could have led to a nervy final quarter but Aldeburgh soon took control. A fine run by centre Ben Watts was stopped two metres short. The Aldeburgh scored the try of the match to open up their lead. A long kick from defence by Mistley was well caught by Adam Hateley (on the pitch in between his injuries) who ran well then spun out a long pass to full back, Stephen Anker. Always dangerous in open play, Stephen beat one man, sprinted through then fired out another long pass to new winger, Sam Mann, who beat the cover defence to score in the corner. (Yes, another Mann. Keep ‘em coming.)

Mistley could not bounce back again. Indeed, Aldeburgh nearly rounded the match off with a further try after Elliot Clarke-Gifford, hooker, ran the ball back straight then linked with Ed who put in a huge kick. The bounce nearly provided Sam Mann with his second try but he was tackled just short in the final play of the game.

Next home match:

Saturday 21st October v Woodbridge 2


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