Extra-time win puts Wisbech into semi
Cheshunt 12, Wisbech 19
At 12-5 down and with a minute remaining, Wisbech were on the brink of going out.
However, they were awarded a scrum on Chesthunt’s five-metre line. The ball was won and, from a power surge to the line, captain Solomon Prestidge touched the ball down.
It was left to Mark Laws, the coolest person on the pitch, to add the much needed conversion which would level the scores and send the game into extra time (10 minutes each way).
Halfway through the first half of extra time Wisbech took the lead for the first time when Shane Vickers finished off a move to score a try; Laws added the extra points.
Wisbech held out despite some late home pressure to earn a memorable victory.
Earlier Wisbech had gone behind midway through the first half from a quick penalty where Cheshunt scored a converted try.
The visitors took control of the game.
By half time a combination of solid forward play and good hands in the backs saw winger Lewis Haddon finish off a try scoring move, 7-5.
Wisbech dominated possession in the first quarter of the second half but Cheshunt scored their second try much against the run of play. The conversion was missed.
Wisbech once again upped their commitment and nerves started to tell until they scored in the final minute.
Coach Leonard Veenendaal, although very pleased with the result, said: “I was very disappointed with the performance last week away to Thursford which we lost 12-10, had we shown the same passion and commitment in that game as we did today we would have won.
“The players must realise that a run in the Vase is a bonus and that our league position is more important as we do not want to become involved in a relegation dog fight.
“Our home league fixture against Wymondham on Saturday is a must-win game.
The Vase win puts Wisbech in the semi-final of the London & SE division which is effectively the last 16 of the national competition. The draw will be made today.
“It would be great if we got a home draw,” said club manager Cliff Humphreys. “I can remember previous home Vase games against Sidmouth and Castleford at this stage of the competition when we lost and it would be a great boost for the club if we can go one better this time.
“In the late 90’s Wisbech got to the national quarter-final round only to lose 5-0 away to Tredworth from Gloucester in controversial circumstances.”
l Wisbech U11 team played at Peterborough Lions on Sunday.
Scores: Wisbech 3, Lions 0. Tries from William Paul and William Easton (2). Wisbech 1, Lions 1. Try: George Kerr. Wisbech 5, Lions 1. Tries: Easton (2), Paul (2), Oliver Coles.