Fakenham’s second team travelled to Lakemham Hewett’s ground to play Norwich Medics second team in this EC4 North promotion battle. Both teams were fighting with Broadland’s second team for the single promotion slot into EC3 North at the end of the season. The game was always going to be a close encounter as the earlier meeting between the two sides had shown when Fakenham had just edged the contest. The game initially looked as if Fakenham were going to romp home but some over complicated backs moves in tight spaces forced handling errors. Fakenham were still on the attack even after the errors but time on the ball and territorial advantage did not produce any points. The visitors simplified things a bit and were finally
rewarded when Jack Lowen-Green scored a try close to the posts to make the conversion easy for Lloyd Marshall 0-7. The relief of the Fakenham score somehow seemed to make them lose concentration and it did not take Medics long to also get on the scoreboard with a converted try of their own. Fakenham then launched a well-executed attack but in the last phases managed to knock the ball forward just metres short of the line and Medics managed to clear their line from the scrum and this took the game to half time with the score at 7-7.
Fakenham immediately knocked the ball forward from the kick off forcing them to retrieve the ball in the loose in order to launch an attack, the ball was chipped forward and it turned into a foot race between the Fakenham backs and the Medics defence. Fakenham thought they had scored the try but the referee adjudged the defender had touched down first, no try, but the medics defender had carried the ball over his own line and the referee awarded a 5 metre scrum to Fakenham. Craig White picked up from No. 8 and with some twisting and turning forced his way over and grounded the ball to score the try and Lloyd Marshall kicked the conversion 7-14. The game then opened up and both teams enjoyed periods of attack but Fakenham used their scramble defence to protect their own line forcing Medics to infringe at breakdowns to try and stop the Fakenham attacks. One attack gave a penalty opportunity and a kickable shot at goal which Lloyd Marshall promptly took the 3 points and increased the lead to 7-17. Medics raised their own game and attacked out wide making some progress down the right wing only for a superbly timed tackle by George Ready to stop a certain try. Fakenham attacked again deep into the Medics territory and the home side it was forced a last ditch attempt to stop the score but judged to be illegal, Rory Singleton reacted quickly, taking a quick tap penalty and scrambled to the line to score another try close to the posts with the conversion again taken by Lloyd Marshall the final whistle went to give Fakenham a 7-24 win to maintain their top position in the play-off places.
Fakenham 2nd will play their closest promotion rivals Broadland Gt Yarmouth 2nd team at home next Saturday 19th March, this will be another tough game and the play off decider for promotion. Fakenham firsts will travel to Wymondham seconds for an EC2 North league game on the same day.