South Woodham Ferrers 20,
Wisbech were edged out in south Essex in their first London NE3 away game of the season.
Due to players being unavailable Wisbech made changes and brought in Kerrie McMullen, Robert Woollard and Agris Kokars from the second team to the bench. James Griffin went into the second row, skipper David Wadsley returned to the back row as Jon Turner returned to the side at inside centre. Wisbech welcomed new signing back row Jack Smith.
From the kick off it soon became apparent that the referee’s interpretation of the rules differed to that of Wisbech as they conceded a number of penalties at the break down. Wisbech lost their discipline and in the first half three players received yellow cards and 10 minutes in the sin bin.
South Woodham Ferrers had a well drilled set of forwards which constantly drove Wisbech back into their five metre line. Wisbech defended to a man. Smith, flanker Tom Martell and centre Shane Vickers all went in the sin bin.
Wisbech conceded a push over try, a penalty and a converted penalty try. Mark Laws slotted over a penalty but Wisbech trailed at half-time 15-3.
Within a couple of minutes into the restart Wisbech were back to full strength and started to play their game. Joe Barfoot intercepted a pass on halfway and scorched to the try line which Laws easily converted (15-10). Once again a number of unnecessary penalties were conceded. Ferrers again scored a pushover try – the conversion was missed.
Shortly after, Jon Turner went over, conversion missed. Wisbech applied pressure in the final 10 minutes but could not break down the defence.
“On reflection the final score could have been much worse,” said manager Cliff Humphreys, “although I was disappointed with the discipline and penalty count I must praise the players. To gain a losing bonus point under these circumstances must be a positive result.”
Wisbech are at home to Upminster on Saturday, kick off 3pm. Training continues tonight at 7pm.