Thetford 36-38 Fakenham - London Counties 3EC

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Fakenham edged this tense London EC3 league game between these two mid-table clubs on a dry breezy afternoon at Thetford Rugby club. In footballing terms, a true game of two halves, both sides well matched but the first half saw Thetford making the most of the chances and Fakenham allowing too many errors in their play, spoiling the flow of their attacks.
Thetford raced into a 10-point lead with a converted try and added a penalty kick on their very next attack 10-0.
Fakenham responded with an unconverted try through Ashley Stewart wide on the right 10-5, but Thetford regained the ball from the kick off and attacked deep into the Fakenham half scoring a try under the post which was converted 17-5.
The visitors rallied and after what seemed like ten phases of play a sharp move by the backs saw Jack Whiteside pick up a pass off his toes to dive over and score Fakenham’s second try, converted by Tom Bane-Young 17-10.
Thetford had not finished though and again challenged for the kick off, winning

Fakenham 18 – Crusaders 22 - London Counties 3 EC Division

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Saturday was a very disappointing result for a team wanting to consolidate their mid-table position in their first season in the London 3 Eastern Counties Division. This young side needs to stand back and reflect on how to make this complicated game easier. Amazingly there are times when you should take the simple option. When you have the wind at your back you should use the boot to make ground and not to try and run from the deep, risking turnovers and pressure. You will not score tries every time you get possession. Occasionally you should work for field position and put the onus on the opposition to work out of their own defence. A combination of all of these measures and also to stop giving easy penalties away could make a big difference to the game!
The match started at a hectic pace with huge commitment from both sides. Crusaders were happy for Fakenham to keep the ball alive and in hand as their much more direct approach was regularly getting the upper hand. The away sides larger forwards were causing problems for the Fakenham’s defence, resulting in an early converted try. 0 -7 to Crusaders. Fakenham struck back after a well taken line out on the 5-meter line by Adam Lingwood. This was mauled and the impressive Howard Kellock, ably supported by Jack Powell-Thorne, peeled

West Norfolk 48 Fakenham 17 – London Counties 3EC

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After finishing off the old year with an away win against Woodbridge and also beating league leaders, Holt, the four-week layoff seemed to have a really adverse effect on the Fakenham team, todays performance was disjointed and lacked accuracy, far too many times the ball was coughed up and first up tackles were brushed aside. From the outset West Norfolk played well with their large forwards more than making the gain line , in turn giving good ball to their very sharp half back pairing.
Early pressure from West Norfolk saw them held up twice over the Fakenham goal line with some good work by Joe Bane-Young and Lyam Thorpe in defence. When the try did come from West No8 Jamie Williamson, it also came with a yellow card for Fakenham. This knocked the confidence of the away side and saw West Norfolk score again, almost from the restart after some very poor defensive work. At 14 points down and 14 men on the field with only 12 minutes played, things were looking bad. Fakenham hung on though and produced a try of their own some 10 minutes later. Slick passing by Damon Howick saw Brett Stolworthy elusively cross over for a converted try making the score 14 points to 7. Expectations that this was the catalyst for a more cohesive looking Fakenham unfortunately

Woodbridgebridge 17 Fakenham 27 - London Counties 3EC

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A brisk wind and the threat of rain showers awaited Fakenham as they travelled to Woodford for this London Counties 3EC game and the good crowd in attendance were duly treated to a good workman like performance from both sides.
Fakenham were the first to trouble the scoreboard, with the wind behind them in the first half, they were awarded a penalty in the 8th minute just to the right of the posts which Lloyd Marshall ably slotted between the posts to take the lead, 0-3.
A mere three minutes later they increased their lead to 0-10 with a try from a line out at which Joe Bane-Young popped a pass to Ashleigh Stewart who ran over the line completely unopposed, Marshall duly converted.
Play for the next 10 minutes was largely uneventful with both sides having problems with the windy conditions and Fakenham in particular having some difficulties with the referee and the penalty count. In the 23rd minute Woodbridge were awarded another penalty for offside and the Fakenham captain was duly warned about any more repeat infringements. Woodbridge took advantage of the situation working

Fakenham 23 – Holt 19 – London Counties 3EC

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After the previous weeks 2nd team win over Holt 3rd’s their respective 1st teams met in this London Counties 3EC league match. With Holt leading the division and Fakenham in 9th place the home side were under no illusions before the game with the consensus being for a Holt win but still a close game. This was probably the first time this season that Fakenham fielded what looked to be a truly representative 1st team with a number of faces back in harness.
What transpired was truly remarkable as Fakenham out thought and out fought Holt throughout and even more amazing as Holt, undefeated this season, were given 26 penalties in the game to Fakenham’s four and if you add three yellow cards to the home side, meaning Fakenham played with fourteen men for thirty minutes of this game, this makes the win absolutely outstanding.
Holt started the game well and took an early lead through a penalty and this was followed by a try and conversion scored after Fakenham’s lineout was put under pressure. The relieving kick from this lineout was charged down and Holt scored., with Holt 0-10 up the pre-match forecasts looked spot on. There was a distinct pattern

Fakenham 12 v Ely 28 – London 3EC

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On a cold, bright, blustery day middle of the table Fakenham took on high flying Ely in a game that thoroughly entertained the large crowd for the afternoon.
Fakenham dominated the first 15 minutes with new flanker Josh Gee popping up everywhere. Some poor kicking out of defence and sharp counter attacks by Brett Stolworthy and Lyam Thorpe saw Ely pinned into their own half and after 14 phases and eight offloads resulted in a penalty which the home side unfortunately failed to convert.
Fakenham then gave away two penalties which let Ely have their first real foothold into the Fakenham half.
A lineout on the 22m line resulted in a training ground move that saw the Ely centre go untouched, under the posts, for a converted try.
Some aggressive counter rucking from Ely thwarted another two attacks by Fakenham and a breakaway from Lloyd Marshall, who looked certain to score, was pulled back by the referee for an earlier knock on.
Mid way through the first half Fakenham eventually troubled the scoreboard with