Diss rugby players in show of unity

RUGBY: This weekend Diss entertain Staines at Mackenders, looking to build on Saturday's efforts at Ampthill.

Ampthill 64, Diss 7

Diss travelled to Ampthill with the specific goal to develop as a team and commit to fitness, team unity and to play for each other.

Although the final result on the scoreboard showed a sound drubbing from a highly-skilled, larger and fitter team, the goals were accomplished.

Mistakes where capitalized on by the hosts, who showed why they are competing at the top of the league.

In the first minute a turnover was pounced upon by Ampthill and an early 7-0 lead was in the bag. Diss responded with strong work and a 20-yard maul put Ampthill on their back foot, however, a turnover by the Diss backs resulted in a quick try to thwart Diss' efforts.

More pressure by the Diss defensive line had hooker Josh Williams charging down a clearing kick that was only to be won back by Ampthill for another counter-attack and third try in the first 15 minutes.

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Not convinced that the game was over, the Blues camped out in the opposition's half with continuous surging drives that forced the Ampthill defence to work overtime to keep Diss from scoring.

Ampthill's defensive efforts were eventually rewarded with two more late first half tries racking up a 33-0 lead going into the break.

The task in the second half was to rely on the team's efforts at training and character to keep fighting for the scraps of ball whenever possible.

Although three more tries by Ampthill put the hosts over the fifty mark, Diss never gave up the battle and actually turned the tables attacking and forcing the play again and again.

After phase play the ball was sent out to the back line and Fraser Hall finally surged through the defensive line for a well-deserved Diss try.

The try was converted by 17-year-old Matt Briggs on his first XV starting debut at fly-half.

Unfortunately, right at the end of another brave defensive effort by Diss, Ampthill mirrored the score of the previous week against Dorking with a 64-7 defeat.

The differences on the day were obvious and the Blues walked away from the game with more confidence and more lessons learnt.

Meanwhile, Diss Rugby Club has parted company with their coach Drew Fautley.

Drew, who had been acting as assistant coach, took over halfway through the season after the resignation for personal reasons of Gavin Brock.

It was felt he should be given the opportunity to try his hand in charge and see if he could take the club forwards.

Unfortunately, despite his enthusiasm and the coaching methods he brought from America, results have not been what he or the club would wish and the club has, reluctantly, decided to look elsewhere.

For the immediate future, the club's Director of Rugby Dave Hall will assume responsibility for all playing matters until a new coach can be appointed.

Diss RFC thank Drew for all his hard work and wish him well for the future.