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Swaffham lads battle well

PUBLISHED: 08:29 04 February 2009 | UPDATED: 11:10 08 July 2010

THE Norfolk U14 Rugby Cup quarter-final was considerably closer than the score would reflect.

The crowd were treated to a display of youth rugby at its best in some challenging conditions with Swaffham losing out by 24-12.

THE Norfolk U14 Rugby Cup quarter-final was considerably closer than the score would reflect.

The crowd were treated to a display of youth rugby at its best in some challenging conditions with Swaffham losing out by 24-12.

In recent years Swaffham would have been well beaten by the Norwich squad, but they came very close to progressing to the next round.

The Impson Butcher's man of the match was awarded to James O'Brien for an excellent overall performance. However, all across the squad there were season-best performances from the players.

Potter led the boys well and whilst they will feel this was a match they might have let slip, they should be very proud of the way they played.

As the teams took to the pitch in front of a large crowd, the snow started. In conditions like this you could expect the rugby to be a bit disrupted, but this was certainly not the case. Norwich were first to cross out wide to take the score to 5-0. From the restart, Norwich fumbled and Swaffham were awarded a scrum.

The back row organised themselves and with the backs set for attack and engaging their opposite numbers, the pack and the front row got the nudge on the scrum. O'Brien picked up and ran through and over the desperate defence of the lone winger to even the score, with the conversion missed.

Swaffham again applied pressure but Norwich's defence was awesome at this point. The half-time score was 5-5.

The second half started badly for Swaffham when Norwich stole the ball at their line-out only metres from the touch line and crashed over to score.

Having had to replace three players with injury in the first half, the remaining squad applied themselves and having been awarded a series of penalties as Norwich infringed at the contact area, found themselves again within sniffing distance of the try line.

The forwards this time organised and drove at the heart of the Norwich defence and as more and more defenders were needed to repel the gold-and-black attack, Mustard spotted a gap and burrowed over to score, Sharky kicked the extras.

It was Swaffham 12, Norwich 10, with less than 10 minutes to go.

The game was on a knife edge at this point and it slipped Norwich's way as with possibly the only missed tackle of the game against Norwich's key attack force of Weber coming from Number 8 on a scrum, the line was broken and Norwich scored under the posts.

As Swaffham pressed to win the game, the ball squirted out of a ruck and was pounced on by the Norwich centre, who tore off and scored, with the final kick taking the score to 24-12.

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