Woodbridge Warriors 19 v W Norfolk 30

West Norfolk started belligerently, from an early lineout 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. The restart saw Woodbridge No 10 JP Hart gather and sprint 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 tryline where an intense pick-and-drive fest and held-up try set up an attacking scrum from which Aspery scored. Woodbridge Salavejs and flanker Matt Bowman put in several up-field carries until a chip from Hart was intercepted by Aspery who scampered 80 metres to score his second.

The game resumed with Revell still using Fox as a battering ram. Hart, with the wind at his back, tried the long kicks but full back Mark Tilbrook and wing Ollie Ridout were quick to exploit weak tackling to regain territory. 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. Woodbridge defended another couple of attacks and benefitted from some Norfolk penalties as the game went aerial, both sides trying to ratchet up the touchlines. Woodbridge got their dividend when, 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 the hard-working scrum half Adam Plummer got the crowd going with another charge but the come-back was too late and West Norfolk survived as worthy winners.

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