City record famous win
Letchworth Garden City 14 Diss 13 This was one of the best days at Legends Lane for many a long year. Riding high with a near two-year unbeaten record, the league leaders were unceremoniously overcome by a rampant Letchworth pack and backs who were prep
Letchworth Garden City 14 Diss 13
This was one of the best days at Legends Lane for many a long year.
Riding high with a near two-year unbeaten record, the league leaders were unceremoniously overcome by a rampant Letchworth pack and backs who were prepared to run hard and direct at their opposite numbers.
All 15 players performed like heroes but mention should be made of man-of-the-match Mark 'Budge' Burgess, who seemed to be everywhere and also scrum half Tom Billingham who had his best game to date for the club.
With the November gloom falling making it nearly dark from kick off it could have been a case of gorillas in the mist for the Baldock Road faithful who eschewed the lost cause of England to watch their local Legends.
Letchworth dominated the early exchanges with the back row of Johal, Sterienburg and Cooke firing well, ably assisted by the boiler house boys Hett and Moynihan.
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An early break by Mike Stack had the Diss defence in disarray but Sterienburg could not hold on to the pass which would have seen him through. A good driving move involving Hett and Long led to a Diss infringement on the 10-metre line and up stepped Henry Robinson to plant a kick straight through the upright for the home side to take a 3-0 lead.
This was increased minutes later when centre Liam Corcoran broke through several tackles. His offload found a dancing Henry Robinson, who in turn passed to winger Dave Rae. He flipped the ball out to skipper Jaggi Johal who dived over the line in the corner for an unconverted try.
Johal then seemed to become the target of the referee's dissatisfaction and was carded for 10 minutes but his spoiling tactics certainly saved a Diss try at this stage.
For 15 minutes the Norfolk side took charge but the Legends line held firm and indeed Giles Cooke led a great breakout which took the home side to the 10-metre line. Letchworth backs were then adjudged offside and Diss full back Chris Baird slotted the penalty. Further pressure led to a great back move by Diss to go over and level the scores.
Letchworth had a let off when indiscipline cost then 10 yards for a kick which full back Baird squandered leaving the scores 8-8 at half time.
Diss took the game to Letchworth after the break but gradually the home forwards seized the initiative and caused a Diss infringement for Henry Robinson to put the home side in the lead 11 - 8 with a well struck penalty.
Good scrummaging from the home pack and sensible kicking from Robinson kept the visitors penned in their own half for long periods of the second half.
The home side were also helped when the Diss No.4 was carded midway through the half. More pressure brought a fairly easy penalty close in which Robinson banged over.
However, the champions were not going to lie down and in the last five minutes a good blindside move saw speedy winger Aaron Bliss evade several tackles to go over but luckily not round the posts leaving Baird with an awkward kick.
With baited breath the crowd watched as to Diss' dismay and Letchworth's joy the kick shaded the outside of the posts.
The Legends then took control and eventually Giles Cooke hoofed the ball into the stands for the referee to signal the final whistle.
On Sunday the second XV entertained Barcelona side Poblenou Engineers who arrived at Legends Lane complete with Catalan television crew.
The game was played in appalling conditions with both teams being completely unrecognisable at the end. The ball was like a piece of brown soap but amazingly some good moves were put together by both sides. Skipper 'Acco' Atkinson led the way with two first half penalties but the Spanish came back well in the second half scoring three times to take the honours 21-6.
The game was played in the best spirit of rugby with both teams sliding through a 'mud' tunnel at the end.