Shelford continue good form in EC Cup
Shelford 29 Ipswich 12
Eastern Counties Plate (12th March) – Ipswich 10 Shelford 33
Shelford secured a home tie for the EC Plate semi-final with an assured victory away to Ipswich. The home team got on the scoreboard first on 5 minutes after a penalty led to a line-out on the right in the Shelford 22. The Ipswich pack set up a well-organised maul to drive over. Ipswich 5 Shelford 0
Shelford were quick to respond in kind, winning a penalty in the Ipswich 22 and Martinelli made good ground. The ball came out to Thomson at fly-half and he broke through the first-up tackle and found a route through the cover to score by the posts.Ipswich 5 Shelford 7
For the next 20 minutes Shelford had the upper hand but tended to lose possession at the breakdown when the ball-carrier did not have enough of support to secure the ball. Eventually the pressure told as Clough got a half-break on the Ipswich 22 and offloaded to Thomson with the ball then moving swiftly along the line to Hatter, Heylen, and Martinelli - all drawing in a defender before passing. On the right wing McGuire cut back in from the wing to set up a ruck, with Cooper and Jones on hand to secure the ball. From the ruck Thomson made a deft inside-pass, taking a heavy tackle in doing so but putting Wells through a gap to pass left to link with Atkinson and then to Hatter. A familiar half-break pulled in an extra defender – now Shelford’s patient play along the width of the Ipswich 22 had set up a 3-on-2 overlap on the left. Heylen was almost through and, though stumbling from a tackle, put Roberts away to draw the last defender before passing to Harwell on the left wing. He evaded a despairing dive to get in at the corner before heading toward the posts to narrow the angle for the conversion. A true team try with 12 players contributing directly to the build-up of the score. Harwell’s extra yards towards the posts helped towards the 2 extra points when Hatter rounded it off with a conversion that hit the far post and dropped just over the crossbar.Ipswich 5 Shelford 14
Ipswich pressed hard towards the end of the first half. One attack failed when they knocked on 5m from the line. Another failed when Hatter saved what seemed a certain try with a last-ditch tap-tackle in the Shelford 22. However, Ipswich capitalised at the breakdown with their scrum-half going over to score near the posts.Ipswich 12 Shelford 14
In the second half Ipswich again put Shelford on the back foot. Ipswich chipped to the 22 and Shelford conceded a penalty. Ipswich kicked to touch to exploit their effective maul. Smart play by Shelford countered this by not engaging at the line-out and as Ipswich moved the ball to the back of their pack, they conceded a ‘truck and trailer’ penalty.
On quarter of an hour Shelford drove from a line-out on the Ipswich 10m. Ipswich eventually managed to counter the attack and were awarded a scrum on their 5m. Despite a good heel, Ipswich were in disarray and Shelford flanker Tebbitt was alert to pick the loose ball to score.
Ipswich 12 Shelford 19
With 10 minutes to go Cooper made a good break from full-back to set-up a ruck on the right in the Ipswich 22. Thomson took advantage of a tiring defence to break from the 22 to score under the posts.Ipswich 12 Shelford 26
In the last minute of the half, the Shelford backs were up fast in defence in the Ipswich 22 as a clearing kick was attempted. From the resulting charge-down, Harwell burst through to score by the posts to end a very successful day for Shelford. Ipswich 12 Shelford 33
Winger Harwell rounds off Shelford’s second try which involved 12 players.
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Shelford flanker Tebitt scores from a mix-up at a defensive scrum.
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