West Norfolk hosts come from behind to win London 3 Eastern Counties clash
London Counties 3EC
Fakenham 24 Wisbech 19
A full-strength Fakenham side avenged the league defeat in the corresponding fixture following an epic battle between two evenly-matched teams.
The game was very competitive right from the whistle with both sides determined to dominate the game.
Wisbech immediately took the upper hand, showing strength and determination in their loose play.
Fakenham, however, dominated the set scrummage and this would be the pattern for most of the game.
Wisbech were the first to make a concerted attack and were rewarded with a converted try to take a seven-point lead.
The home side responded a minute later, forcing the visitors back into their own 22 metre area with Damon Howick scoring under the posts, converted by Lloyd Marshall to level the scores.
The game developed into a fierce battle with both sides forcing the pace with defences working hard to break down any attacking movements.
Fakenham were steadily pushed back, with Wisbech using their back row and other forwards to push into the home half and a converted try saw the visitors regain the advantage.
Fakenham tried hard to get level again but were repelled several times before stand-off Tom Bane-Young slipped through to score an unconverted try, taking the score at half-time to 12-14.
The second half was just as unforgiving as the first with both sides suffering from injuries and needing to use their bench.
Wisbech were the first to break the second half impasse, scoring an unconverted try, to make it 19-12 in their favour.
Fakenham had to dig deep to get back into the game and, after several scrums, the home side finally worked the ball across the pitch for Josh Gee to go over for an unconverted try.
With time almost out, a ball from a Fakenham scrum was fed to Bane-Young who launched at a gap that was closed quickly by Wisbech.
But not before a quick pass to new skipper Jordan Walker saw him initially caught on the line but a half spin and his momentum left him to ground the ball over the line.
Marshall again converted to wrap up a thrilling win for the hosts.
Tomorrow, Fakenham are in home action again with Thurston the visitors in the league.
Fakenham seconds travel to North Walsham III for a merit table clash.
There will be a casino night at the rugby club tomorrow night, starting at 7pm to raise funds for improvements to facilities.
All are welcome and tickets can be booked by calling Alan on 07859 806130.