Saturday saw Fakenham host third place side Norwich Medics for the latest round of EC2 north games. Fakenham, expecting the usual strong Medics performance, really started the game as if they meant business, driving forwards to Medics territory with both pace and determination, putting their opponents on the backfoot from the very start of the game. The first score of the game went to Fakenham when Josh Sperring scored a try wide out on the left wing after a fast-flowing movement that involved both the Fakenham forwards and backs. Tom Bane- Young uncharacteristically missed the conversion leaving the score 5-0. After the restart Fakenham again pressed forward with intent, not allowing their visitors
to settle into their stride and the second try soon came from Ashley Stewart forcing his way over on the left wing in a similar position to the first try, but again the conversion missed it’s mark, 10-0. Medics were launching attacks of their own but without the sharpness of their hosts and lacking the necessary penetration that was needed. Fakenham’s attack however had both the urgency and speed to stretch Medics defence even more, Fakenham winger Josh Gee started his attack down the left side but ended his mazy run by scoring wide out on the right wing, the conversion again missed, 15-0. Medics once again tried to launch attacks but the Fakenham defence held firm as it has all season and they again drove Medics back onto their own territory. By now seeming unstoppable, Fakenham won possession from a ruck in the Medic’s 22 metre area with Joe Bane-Young receiving the pass from Paul Richardson and immediately he switched the play from left to right and driving for the line was tackled by Medics defence but he reached out his long arm to place the ball beyond the try line for the home sides 4th try and the bonus point, again the kick was missed 20-0. Fakenham, however, had not finished and the next try was scored by Matthew King with an excellent run down the right wing to take the score to 25-0, Tom B-Y relinquished kicking duties to his brother Joe but he could not improve on the kicking display either with no additional points coming. The half time whistle blew soon afterwards with Fakenham leading 25-0 and they were worth every point (especially when you realised that if the kicking had been of it’s usual standard it could have been 38-0 – 5 conversions and a penalty missed).
The second half saw Fakenham defending for 20 minute as Medic’s wound up their game and tried to get back on terms but the Fakenham defence remained resilient as even when it seemed to have been breached there was always another one of the Fakenham players made it back to make another tackle. Some of the Medic’s play took them to within inches of the score line before the cover tackle took the opportunity away at the last split second. Medics strung some good phases of play together pressing Fakenham back into their 22metre area for long periods but all to no avail. With Fakenham kicking to relieve the pressure only for the visitors to run the ball back, eventually Tom B-Y attackingly chipped the ball over the Medics defence and with a fortuitous bounce recovered the ball and beat the last two defenders to score Fakenham’s sixth try of the game right under the posts and convert it himself 32-0. Fakenham had broken the shackles and the game was now more open with both sides attacking and defending well. After one particularly great handling sequence, George Ready broke free to score under the posts and Tom B-Y added the extra two to move the score to 39-0. To cap it all Lloyd Marshall repeated his moves of the previous week when he pounced on a lose ball and kicked forward to outpace the defence and scoop up the ball to score Fakenham’s eighth try of the game, the kick from Tom B-Y successfully took the score to 46- 0 and also the final whistle to bring the game to a close. The score belies the Medics contribution to the game but Fakenham were happy to claim the 5 points win. With Disc 2nd’s winning at North Walsham without a bonus point it means Fakenham have now extended their lead over second placed Diss to 4 points. As impressive is Fakenham’s points difference which has now moved out to 401 (Diss have 194
Next week should be Cup fixtures but Fakenham are still unsure as to which team they will face in the Norfolk Plate or where they play, as there are still two games to be played to decide their opposition. As it stands at the moment Fakenham are without a game at both levels this coming Saturday but fixture secretary Howard Kellock will be chasing for a fixture for a home game.