West Norfolk 22
West Norfolk took the first step in their attempt to get back to winning form as they produced a gritty performance against mid-table Stowmarket on Saturday.
The hosts were able to run out with a much more settled squad with the return of Craig Edwards, James Wilson and Alex Singleton amongst others in the backs, as well as Paul Denton starting at hooker.
Despite the damp weather, West were determined to get on the front foot from the kick-off and proceedings got off to a good start for them when Stowmarket went a man down for 10 minutes after a silly infringement at the breakdown. This was soon followed up by a kick and chase which ended with full-back Ross Biggs touching down in the right corner to give the hosts an early 5-0 lead.
However, almost immediately after this initial breakthrough, West then became their own worst enemy as a number of ambitious passes in the conditions, combined with a few lapses in concentration allowed Stowmarket to gain the upper hand with two tries to go 12-5 ahead.
West’s forwards, who had the best of the set pieces throughout, then began to work their way up the field. A series of close range bursts finished with back rower Lee Williamson crashing over to close the gap at 10-12.
Just as West were looking to get back into the game, encamping themselves within the Stowmarket half, a quickly taken lineout on the break saw the visitors extend their lead to 17-10, before a knee injury to James Wilson at fly half then saw him leave the pitch.
A stern talking-to at the interval, plus the injection of some creative play by fly-half replacement Sam Moses, then managed to turn the game in the third quarter, with West now looking much more threatening.
This pressure told when winger Alex Singleton burst through to score after a neat sequence of attacking phases saw both the forwards and backs combining effectively.
A fourth try to secure the bonus point win was then scored when winger Jake Richardson clinically finished off a great pick and go from Moses, who then added the conversion. West continued to stutter somewhat out wide and were unable to add any further points as they closed the game off.
“This was a game we should have won much more comfortably, but to win even when not playing at your best is a good sign. Now we have another week off as we build up to a tough challenge away to Beccles on November 7,” said manager, Nigel Richardson.
Adrian Flux MoM: Sam Moses.
West Development lost 21-7 away to a strong Norwich 2nds.
Adrian Flux MoM: Mark Tillbrook.