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9 Tries Cantabs Over Power Woodbridge

It was another barmy autumn day, and according to the BBC the temperature hit an October record, so water intake was the name of the game at Sedley Taylor Road. James Walton (James II) was making his debut at outside centre, having recently joined Cantabs from that other place, he accompanied James I (Thomas aka Casper) who lined up inside him. James III (McLaughran) being unavailable for this match.

Louis Mann, son of Bob, was also making his debut at flanker.

2mins: Great run from scrum half Dean James who gathered the ball, in his own half, from a long Woodbridge clearance, made good ground, linked with Ali McCormick, and Casper was on hand for his first touch down of the season. Ali converted; 7 - 0

Straight from kick-off Cantabs contrived to mess up the catch, gave away a penalty on their own 22; 7 - 3.

5mins: Woodbridge caught offside on their own 22m line; Ali took the kick;

10 - 3 to Cantabs.

Woodbridge then had a further two penalties on our 22 and converted one of them; 10 - 6. And, that was that for Woodbridge as far as scores went.

Wave upon wave of Cantabs attacks rather destroyed the opposition.

13mins: Ali adds another penalty; 13 - 6

15mins; the team move of the match. It started with some great link play from the forwards in the Cantabs half, who shipped the ball through the backs out to Francois Eve on the left wing. Francois managed to switch the ball back inside from close to the left hand touch, back down through the backs where Isaia Barbieri, made good ground before bringing in the backs once again, for Paul Graddage to cut in from the right wing to finish under the posts. At least ten Cantabs involved and Woodbridge not close. Ali converted; 20 - 6.

20mins: Cantabs made good ground from a rolling maul from the Woodbridge 22m, gaining good ground and just like last week it was hooker Cyril Journoux, who finished off out right; 25 - 6.

The Cantabs pack was winning all the scrums, and also dominating the line-outs. Dean James was setting up move after move for the backs with some great slick passing at every breakdown. It was further pressure that allowed prop Jon Perks to break clear after 25mins and unselfishly passed to Louis, when he would normally have gone through their full-back. With only the posts in front of him Louis managed to spill the pass, and as result earned himself a pint of Guinness from the captain after the match (some sort of special reward it seems).

However Cantabs secured the Woodbridge drop-out, and within a minute we were taking the penalty option of a five metre scrum, Cantabs easily pushed the opposition backwards, and No 8 Richard Ford, finished the job neatly. Ali converted try, number 4, to make the score 32 - 6, and our bonus point was secured for the third successive match.

After 35minutes winger Paul, kicked ahead, and flanker Ben James collected a kind bounce to touch down; 37 - 6 at half time.

Richard Ford was substituted to ensure availability for next week, and Jonny Heaver joined the fray as did James IV (Setchell replacing Thomas).

Woodbridge came out meaning business and managed a sustained period deep in our half. Three minutes into the half, an unfortunate high tackle earned Jon Perks an extended break but with only seven in the pack, Cantabs still won every scrum! The Woodbridge prop did remark that they might win a scrum if our entire front five took ten minutes out.

48mins: A fantastic run down the left by Francois from half way, going round, or through, three defenders, brought him two metres short of the line, where he just got his pass away inside to a diving Warren Cowan for a score in the corner; 42 - 6. Francois had switched to the left for this match, but for the fourth match in succession it was his strong running, and awareness that brought tries for his teammates.

56mins; fantastic run from within his own half by right wing Paul, who stepped inside two tackles, beat another defender inside, and then cut back diagonally out to the right wing to touch down in the corner.

Francois was substituted for Tom Wakerly on the left wing, but the onslaught continued unabated. 64mins: following another good scrum on the Woodbridge 22 Paul broke clear, and passed to Ali for a touchdown, which the scorer converted; 54 - 6.

With one minute to go, it was Paul in again for his hat-trick in the corner at a canter. Final score 59 - 6 to Cantabs, and Woodbridge mercifully spared any overtime. Nine tries in total, following eight the previous Saturday. Man of the match was awarded to Isaia, who now misses two matches as he is visiting his family back home to Italy. However with Charlie Searle and James III back for the difficult encounter at unbeaten Harwich next week, the squad can look forward to the encounter.

Cantabs remain top of Eastern Counties 1, with Harwich, Wisbech and Southwold looking likely to be the main opposition.

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