First-half domination sets Sudbury up for second win

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LONDON LEAGUE DIVISION TWO NORTH EAST

Sudbury 20

Romford and Gidea Park 3

Sudbury continued their good start with a second successive league victory, beating Romford & Gidea Park on Saturday.

Romford kicked off up the hill, but Sudbury soon took play back into the visitors half, but it was obvious from the first whistle that both teams had solid defences and this would be the key area.

Romford got the opportunity to put the first points on the board when Sudbury gave away a penalty on the halfway line. They opted to kick for goal, but the ball sailed just wide of the posts.

The Romford defence was solid but Sudbury were able to make ground wide on the right when Shaun Smith ran down the touchline to score after eleven minutes of play. At the restart Sudbury worked hard to take play back into the Romford 22 and earned a penalty when the visitors were defending hard. The kick was missed.

Exchanges remained fast, furious and evenly contested for the first half-hour, and then the visitors changed their tactics.

They slowed the game down by keeping the ball tight at the breakdown to avoid the speed of the home teams backs who were getting to the ball as it was moved wide.

But after 35 minutes Sudbury made sure of possession when they had the put in at a scrum just inside their own half. Quick hands once again put Smith in space, and he outran the defence over 50 metres.

Tempers flared just before half time, and both teams had a player sent to the sin bin. From a scrum in the Romford half, Tom Summers picked up from the base and darted for the line, throwing a big dummy to beat a defender to score and then convert his own try.

Summers increased the lead with a penalty in front of the posts just on the half-time whistle.

Romford managed to contain Sudbury more in the second half, and both teams defended well which led to an interesting but low scoring half, McVeigh slotting over an early penalty for Romford.

Sudbury then suffered an injury to Ethan Wright which held up the game for five minutes. Sudbury put together some good penetrating moves in the last half-hour, but could not quite break the defence to get the fourth try for the bonus point.

Crucially Romford never looked as though they were going to get anywhere near the Sudbury total.

On Saturday, Sudbury travel to Basildon, the match kicking off at 2pm.