Mon 13 Dec 2021 23:35

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Sudbury retained their top slot with a win over Norwich on Saturday though it was one of their poorest performances of the season. Sudbury, again missing some of their more senior players through injury, were not as sharp as they usually are with some poor handling and loose passing but were also hampered by some poor decision making by a referee who struggled to keep up with play where the action was. They also missed out on at least four tries when they knocked on or dropped the ball having already beat the defence. Having said that the defence again held firm and the home side failed to cross the stripe with ball in hand, their only points coming from a penalty kick.
Norwich kicked off and Sudbury immediately took play back into home territory and after seven minutes of play the forwards worked the ball over the line for Jack Dachtler to touch down. Sam Rust took over where Chris Lewis left off with the conversion from wide on the right. Norwich kicked out from the restart so it was back to the centre for a scrum. Sudbury again pressurized the Norwich 22 but the Sudbury hands were letting them down as they appeared to be trying too hard as they enjoyed territorial advantage and 90% possession in the first fifteen minutes. Henry Cowling scored from a break in the twenty two and again Rust converted.
After twenty five minutes Norwich moved play into the Sudbury half for the first time and the Blues came under pressure and were penalized by the referee for infringements at the ruck several times and eventually the home side opted to take the points. Sudbury weathered the storm and finished the half back in the home half with Cowling denied a second try when the referee called him back for a penalty for a Norwich high tackle when he was clear to score.
Sudbury started the second half with an early try from Jonny Taylor who broke from just inside the home half, Rust provided the extras on the ten minute mark. After another squandered break by Sudbury, Rusty then scored and converted for the bonus point to consolidate league position. Sudbury then swapped the half backs in an attempt to change tactics but Norwich used their defence well and frustrated any attempt for Sudbury to increase the points gap and with Sudbury looking a bit off colour on the day the half was played out without further score. The good news is Sudbury should be back to full strength for the first game of the second half of the season against Colchester at home next Saturday.

Match report by Don Reekie
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