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1st XV - Match centre

Norwich Union
Sat 13 Jan 14:00 - Eastern Counties Greene King League - Eastern Counties Greene King Division One North Full time

Union secure 3rd position

With an impressive win away at Swaffham

Match Report: Gareth Davis

There was a steely determination about the group, looking to get the win and secure third place finish in the first phase of the league before entering new territory in February.

Swaffham kicked off against the slope and their big forwards had a couple of mails in Union's half which they contained fairly comfortably. A penalty awarded for holding on, as Jake Rodwell was causing his usual havoc saw Lloyd Davis plant the ball into the corner. The Union faithfull all should know the next part! Yes, Matt Gyton soared to enable us to drive out lineout before man of the match Chris Spenceley crashed over to score.

Another clearing kick then maul saw Jon Spicker get over wide out which Lloyd converted to take Union to a 12 nil lead. A harsh yellow for the durable Phil Harris and Swaffham narrowed the gap before Union reasserted authority and some disciplined drives saw another converted try by Tom Whipps as Union tool a 7-19 lead into half-time.

Starting well and getting an early score was the topic at half time. Fresh impetus provided by Noel Owen Jones and debutante Nick Roberts helped Union take the game away from Swaffham as Ben Bond-webster crashed over, then Lloyd Davis with a salmon leap finished off another powerful surge through the forwards, ably led by Simon Pitcher and Matt Spenceley. Again tries went converted as Davis found his kicking boots on a quagmire pitch.

Union conceded as Swaffham scored a well worked short side try as David Sheldon-Smilley and Daniel Norgate were outnumbered in defence. Union had the final say, not before Jon Spicker saw red for a retaliatory blow to an opposing player that the ref deemed worthy of the red. With Spicker off the field the those supporting all watched amused as the backs joined a set maul to blast Swaffham into their dead ball area where Smilley claimed the try, Lloyd Davis kicked his fourth conversion to finish matters at 14-38.

After the game Coach Gareth Davis said "As was said pre match and again at the post match debrief, there is no reason we can't compete against anyone when our A game is in evidence. Travelling to games with expectations and not hope has and should be the norm now. When we get things right we have proved with performances this season that we deserve to be where we currently stand. A hard working side with the backs today making yards for us and forwards that are playing really well. A short two week break before we regroup for next stage of the season. Enjoy it lads as more tough ones to come. Thanks to support today and for all involved in the season so far."

Team: Chris Spenceley, Ben Bond-Webster, Simon Pitcher, Matt Gyton, Phil Harris, Matt Spenceley, Jake Rodwell, Jon Spicker, Lloyd Davis, Adrien Marie-Francoise, Daniel Norgate, Matthew Cook, Tom Whipps, Graham Hunt, David Sheldon-Smillie Replacements: Nick Roberts, Noel Jones

Scorers: Chris Spenceley 1T, Jon Spicker 1T, Tom Whipps 1T, Ben Bond-Webster 1T, David Sheldon-Smillie 1T, Lloyd Davis 1T, 4C man of the match Chris Spenceley

Quilter Kids First Champions winner – December: Old Hales RFC

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League round up

Other Eastern Counties Greene King Division One North results



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League table

# Team Pl Pts
1. Fakenham 14 70
2. North Walsham II (Raiders) 14 53
3. Norwich Union 14 46
4. Diss II (Saracens) 14 44
5. Norwich Medics 14 28
6. Beccles 14 24
7. Swaffham 14 17

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