Dramatic last-gasp win for Diss
Diss 21, Bishop's Stortford 14Andy Thorpe's last-minute try earned Diss a dramatic London National 3SE victory - and sent a large Mackenders crowd wild with delight.
Diss 21, Bishop's Stortford 14
Andy Thorpe's last-minute try earned Diss a dramatic London National 3SE victory - and sent a large Mackenders crowd wild with delight.
The reaction of the players at the end, and the sight of coach Gavin Brock dancing on to the pitch, showed how important this win was for the morale of the team after last week's defeat, and the injuries that came with it.
Bishop's Stortford pinned Diss in their own half for much of the first 20 minutes, but despite numerous overlaps and scoring opportunities they only had one penalty and one unconverted try on the scoreboard.
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Warren Wilby converted a penalty with the first attacking opportunity that Diss had, and the balance of the match then started to change.
The pack started to get the upper hand and from a line-out catch by Elliot Page, the pack drove the ball over the line, with Tim Groom appearing at the bottom of the mass of players with the ball. Wilby was unable to convert.
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The second half began with the home side beginning to assert more and more pressure, leading to a successful penalty from Wilby. The back-line then began to show their skills, with good moves and handling, especially from Thorpe, Aaron Bliss and Alex Kelsall, backed up by the pack exerting more and more pressure, with Josh Williams winning two scrums against the head.
Despite the pressure Stortford were able to keep the scoreboard turning with two successful penalties before Wilby evened the score with a penalty.
For the last five minutes Diss were camped on the Stortford line, with a series of scrums and drives by the pack.
But with the last play of the game the ball came to Pete Chartier who chipped the ball over the stretched defence for Thorpe to dive on to the ball for a try, which was converted by Warren Wilby.
This was an excellent team performance, especially in the second half, and all the players can take pride in their afternoon's work.
A repeat performance next week at Portsmouth will see Diss pulling away from the bottom.
Everyone at the club wishes speedy recoveries to Richard Horne and Will Farrer, who are out for the long term after last week's game, and welcome Lee Bolger as assistant coach to Brock. He is the Finnish national coach and is here as part of his coaching qualifications.