Newmarket 1st XV away to Woodbridge
We should have won the match
In Saturday’s close match against Woodbridge the lead swapped between the two teams several times before the home team ended the match with a win. The Newmarket players put up a really creditable performance and were unlucky not to walk away with a win themselves.
Newmarket started the match with several regulars not playing and only had one man on the bench. Given that Woodbridge was second in the league and Newmarket fourth, you could have been forgiven for thinking that a Woodbridge win was inevitable. Not so.
Newmarket made a really strong start. For the first ten minutes the team had all the possession and the home team only ventured into the Newmarket half once. Woodbridge conceded a penalty and fly half Joe Stafford kicked Newmarket into an early lead.
On the 21st minute Woodbridge, against the flow play, took the lead with a breakaway try which was subsequently converted. Newmarket fought back and was justly rewarded with a try, scored by Pat Kearney, and re-took the lead to end the first half 7-8 ahead.
Early in the second half Raymond Richardson, playing scrum half, sustained a nasty blow to his shoulder which forced him to leave the pitch. With only one replacement on the bench Head Coach Dave Sayer had to re-arrange his team quite drastically.
Woodbridge took advantage of the Newmarket re-shuffle to score its second try in the 57th minute and retake the lead. Newmarket responded four minutes later with Mark Cooper scoring a try to take the score to 14-13.
Newmarket continued to apply pressure, but the Woodbridge fly half found the gaps where Newmarket had players out of their normal position. Eventually the home side scored the last try of the match to win 19-13.
Dave Sayer, Newmarket’s Head Coach, said “Getting a deserved point away is always good - especially when the team you play is unbeaten. But we return home knowing we should have won the match. We have a week off now for players to rest and injuries to heal and I would expect numbers back at training for the next fixture. With the spirit in the side, and the abilities we have, it is now just about numbers. As coach my message to all the injured players is to wish them a speedy recovery.”
Clearly Newmarket missed its Bell boys and will no doubt have a lift on their return.
Newmarket’s next match is Saturday 22nd October when the team play Bury St Edmunds 3 at home. KO is at 3pm.