Rugby Union: Fakenham record impressive win against fellow league winners
PUBLISHED: 09:57 22 February 2018
Mike Wyatt ABIPP
Having won their initial game of the Eastern Counties Shield, Fakenham came into this fixture expecting a stern test.
Their opponents were Ipswich YM, a team who had come to this point with 14 out of 15 bonus point wins so far.
The weather was perfect, the pitch was drier and a big crowd had turned up expecting some good rugby.
Fakenham were quickly on top and tries came in the third (Jack Powell-Thorn), sixth (James Howell), 12th (James Howell) and 17th minutes (Powell-Thorn). Lloyd Marshall converted two of them.
With the YM defence occupied coping with the forwards, the backs had the space to run and make good ground. Fakenham’s first four scores all came from the forwards whose work rate was exceptional, with Powell Thorn and Rob Ward both catching the eye. Ward was awarded the Norfolk Brewhouse man-of-the-match award for his hard work.
Finding themselves 24 points down YM regrouped and showed why they had won their league. Their first try came from some sustained pressure with the pack running hard and breaking down the Fakenham defence. Both sides traded attacks for the next 15 minutes with neither side managing to score.
The first half finished with a fifth score for the hosts, this time from captain Tom Bane-Young. Neat offloading and looping between the backs found Bane-Young in the open with a five metre run in for the grounding. With the conversion added by Marshall the score at half-time was 31-5.
The second half was far more even with three tries for each side. Fakenham’s came from Jordi Walker, a second for Bane-Young and Luke Taylor. Walker’s try was a pure expression of strength as he took three YM defenders five metres in to the try line. Bane-Young’s and Taylor’s scores both came from simple play, drawing a defender, giving an easy pass and allowing the space to open.
Two of YM’s tries came from further forward pressure while their final one was an opportunistic run from the fly-half when he was able to hack the ball forward and be the first one to gather it. The final score was 52-22 in favour of the home side.
Fakenham’s next fixture is in a fortnight’s time when they travel to Thurston for a top of the table clash.