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Harecroft Road side rack up 12 tries


By Fenland Citizen Reporter


Wisbech 1st XV cruised to London 3 Eastern Counties victory against Thurston Rugby Club on Saturday, winning 80-10 at Harecroft Road.

In the early stages it was a tight contest.

Thurston were in the ascendency, deep in the Wisbech half, but the resolute Wisbech defence managed to keep Thurston out. However, discipline let the Wisbech 'Men in Red' down, Thurston converting the penalty to take a 3-0 lead.

Skipper Solomon Prestidge (right) presenting Wisbech Round Table man-of-the-match award to Pat Grote (left) (6342438)
Skipper Solomon Prestidge (right) presenting Wisbech Round Table man-of-the-match award to Pat Grote (left) (6342438)
Skipper Solomon Prestidge (right) presenting Wisbech Round Table man-of-the-match award to Pat Grote (left) (6342438)
Skipper Solomon Prestidge (right) presenting Wisbech Round Table man-of-the-match award to Pat Grote (left) (6342438)

After 10 minutes of pressure, Wisbech began to see more of the ball and following a quick attacking move, Sam Anderson returning to the side after a lengthy injury enforced absence, opened the scoring with a try. Fullback Harry Newman successful with the first of his nine conversions to extend Wisbech’s lead to 10-3.

From that point on it was all Wisbech, and a try from Henrikus Stankus after some clever interplay with Newman in the 16th minute signified what was to come.

Leading 14-3, Wisbech continued to apply the pressure on Thurston.

Minutes later, Wisbech Round Table man-of-the-match Pat Grote scored after bulldozing his way through the Thurston defence. A quick Wisbech attack saw skipper Solomon Prestidge score his first try of the afternoon.

Thanks to accurate kicking from fullback Harry Newman, more converted tries followed as half-time broke, the score stood at a comfortable 47-3 to the hosts.

The second half saw supremacy from the home side continued with Wisbech picking up the same level of intensity as they ended the first.

After a period of sustained attacking play, Wisbech’s physicality proved to be too much for the Thurston defence, the Men in Red appearing to be running in tries with training park ease.

Credit to Thurston who never gave up where awarded with a well-deserved converted try of their own capitalising from a Wisbech error.

The game finished with an emphatic 80-10 bonus point win for Wisbech.

Head coach Nico Steenkamp said: “While the result is fantastic, today has been about getting the Christmas cobwebs out of our system, getting 2019 of with a positive start but more importantly getting the lads match ready for the challenge away to second in the league Wymondham.

“It was an incredibly physical game tonight and in spite of the score line I think Thurston provided a very tough test for the lads out there.

"Credit to the lads for keeping and sticking to our game plan, shape and their concentration for the full 80 minutes, but taking that form on the road to Wymondham will be the true test of how far we have come.”

Wisbech head to local rivals Wymondham on Saturday, kicking off at 2pm at Barnard Fields, their new clubhouse & grounds.

Tries: Sam Anderson (2), Solomon Prestidge (2), Henrikus Stankus (2), Andy Claydon (2), Pat Grote, Raimondas Vinksna, James Napier, Luke Green.

Cons: Harry Newman (9), Jack Malkin

Wisbech 1st XV: 15. Harry Newman, 14. Raimondas Vinksna, 13. James Napier, 12. Sam Anderson, 11. Henrikas Stankus, 10. Jack Malkin, 9. Andy Claydon, 8. David Wadsley; 7. Pat Grote, 6. Skippy Parsons, 5. Solomon Prestidge (c), 4. Nathan Goodale, 3. Luke Green, 2. Nico Steenkamp, 1. Mikey Watts Replacements: 16. Kerrie McMullen, 17. James Patrick.



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