Wymondham 3’s 22-27 Fakenham 2’s – Eastern Counties Merit Table 3N

Fakenham’s second team travelled to Wymondham thirds for this EC3N Merit Table game in severely windy conditions knowing not only would they be battling against their hosts but also the weather. The wind which was roughly blowing straight down the pitch was so strong that the goal posts were bending under the pressure.

With the wind at their backs the Fakenham side applied some early pressure but the wind made handling difficult for both sides, regularly resulting in either a knock on or dropped passes. The hosts were the first to put points on the board when a move down the left-hand side of the pitch saw them score a try. The conversion stood absolutely no chance as it was straight into the wind 5-0. Fakenham then rallied and pushed into the Wymondham half, from a penalty move the ball was moved to Josh Gee and he out-paced the defence to score on the left wing, the conversion was attempted by Matt Hardman but it missed the target 5-5. Josh added another try when a good passing move saw him take a wide arc outside the defence to score his second; Matt was on target with his downwind conversion to take the score to 5-12. Fakenham were now pushing their wind advantage as they drove forwards and managed to get Josh free once again to score an unconverted try 5-17. Wymondham were not down however and fought back to score an unconverted try themselves taking

the score at half time to 10-17.
The second half meant the wind advantage was with Wymondham and they could utilise a kicking game which had been denied them in the first half. But it was Fakenham who scored next when after a break away by Rory Singleton and some inter passing between forwards and backs they were awarded a penalty. Matt opted to take a scrum and picked up and drove for the line but he was held up , the offload went to Josh who dotted down for his fourth try of the game 10-22. Wymondham did utilise a kicking game and with a dominant lineout secured good, clean ball for their backs to use and scoring a converted try to take the score to 17-22. Fakenham responded well with some individual breaks from rucks and with some great support play Adam Steele broke free but was tackled 5m short, the pop up off the ground was gathered by Josh unopposed and he scored his fifth try of the game 17-27. Wymondham felt they could still win the game and forced the pace especially as each time Fakenham got the ball they had to run at Wymondham as a kick would just blow back. The home side were awarded a penalty on halfway, an inch perfect kick took play to within 5 metres of the visitor’s line. The line out was caught clean and driven and before Fakenham could organise the Wymondham pack had driven and scored an unconverted try 22-27. Wymondham in control of the game now, forced the issue and were soon down at the Fakenham 5m line, once again going for the win. The line out was caught and the drive started but this time Fakenham were expecting it and halted it only metres from their line, the resulting ruck would be the home side’s last opportunity to score. After ruck and counter ruck battles, the referee’s whistle finally blew, for a penalty, but who were the offenders? A Wymondham player had handled the ball in the ruck to move it back illegally. This meant with time already out, with a quick tap and pass and a kick to touch the game was over. The final score 22-27 a well fought game and both sides managed the conditions well.
Saturday 23rd March will see Fakenham first team in action away to local rivals Holt firsts with a 3pm kick-off. The second team are due to host Broadland Gt Yarmouth seconds at home again 3pm kick off.
Fakenham Ferrets U10’s played on Sunday in a festival at Crusaders rugby club. Their performances are showing good progress, beating West Norfolk in their first game and only narrowly losing their other two fixtures against Lakenham Hewett and the hosts Crusaders. A good morning’s rugby had by all the Fakenham players. We are still looking for more year 4 boys and girls to join our U9’s team, they will be at home on Sunday training from 10am. New players are always welcome as are the Parents in the clubhouse where teas, coffees and bacon rolls are on sale at very reasonable rates. Phone 07859 806130 and speak to Alan Young for further details.