It was another gloriously hot and sunny September afternoon for spectators, but for the players a little too warm, as they met the newly promoted Cantbrigians in their first match at the ground for twenty-five years. The Norwich team were lead out on to the pitch by team Captain, Dave Michlethwaite and mascot for the match Thomas Blackmore.
Captain Dave Micklethwaite and Thomas Blackmore NRFC team Mascot
The first quater of the game was dominated by the Cantabrigians scrum who were unlucky to miss a penalty in the first few minutes of the game. Shortly after the start Norwich lost their lose prop, Horslen through an injury, which may take some time to recovery from.
Claguen converted a try by Searley after 8 minutes following a drive by Cantabrigians scrum, taking the score to 0 – 7.
It’s a tight squeeze!
Norwich’s scrum was pushed backwards, not before Ford scored a try which took the score to 0 – 12, with Clague unable to kick the conversion. The packs weight difference meant that Norwich would have to work hard to maintain their presence in the game.
Legs being taken away
Norwich needed to play to their strengths if not it was going to be a long and hard afternoon. The team realised this quite quickly and the feel of the team changed as they then rallied to play a different game with the ball moving freely and making more use of the backs.
A low tackle for the ball
Jordi Walker scored a try after swerving several defenders, unfortunately O’Brian was unable to convert, but this did reduce the home side’s deficit to 7 points.
Protective head wear being worn by NCFC team member
Norwich kept up the pressure when Scott Hancocks scored close to the posts, which was converted by O’Brian bringing the scores level with a minute to go before half time.
The expressions say it all!
Norwich missed a kick-able penalty with a second being missed by O’Brian. Norwich spent 75 percent of the playing half in the visitors 22 yard area although unable to add to the score line.
Norwich tried numerous times to score, but were unsuccessful with only inches to go while the visitors keeping there defence firm. Norwich had practised their defensive moves in their pre-season game against Peterborough, which showed during the game. Under intense pressure the home support worried in the last five minutes of the half that Cantabrigians would score in a strong push for points.
Hang on to that ball and keep going!
Somehow Norwich hung on to the ball from the 5 metre scrum, taking the pressure off for the moment allowing one final challenge.
The ball is in there somewhere!
The final score was a reflection of how the match was played. Norwich had the stronger backs and Cantabrigians had the stronger scrum, however, Norwich missed a number of scoring opportunities last season may be regretted this.
NRFC Ball Boys this week were, mascot Thomas Blackmore (middle front) Duncan Steele, Joseph Hollidge, Samuel Furness and Ewan Cameron
The next home game is against South Woodham Ferres on the 29th September 2012. See you there!