LONDON THREE NORTH EAST: Sudbury 40 Beccles 24: Sudbury have their eyes on silverware as the favourites to lift the Suffolk Cup ahead of tomorrow’s semi-final at Woodbridge (2pm).
Goal-kicker Tom Summers is expected to play, despite being sent off for fighting during Sudbury’s 40-24 win over Beccles in London Three North East on Saturday.
Northampton Saints youngster George Wacokecoke set up two tries for Shaun Smith before displaying his blistering pace to score himself as the hosts racked up a bonus-point victory to remain in the promotion race — but their attention is solely on the cup this weekend.
“We wont take Woodbridge lightly,” said Sudbury head coach Graham Richards, who hopes to retain a similar-strength squad for the trip to Woodbridge. “We’re the highest-ranked team in the competition as it stands and teams are going to want to beat us.”
Speaking of Summers’ availability after his sending off, Richards added: “We could stop him playing now — because he is going to get a ban and that would make it effective from now — but the cup game is so important.”
At home to Beccles on Saturday, early Sudbury pressure resulted in Summers slotting over a simple penalty, but the visitors hit straight back with a converted try.
It required Beccles to lose a man to the sinbin nine minutes before the interval for Sudbury to regain control.
Smith scored two tries from passes by Wacokecoke — the first with a nonchalant one-handed flick.
Almost as soon as they were back up to the full quota of 15 players, Beccles had another sent to the sinbin and — after a penalty each had been exchanged — Tom Murray stole in for a try that Summers converted to give Suds a 32-10 advantage at half-time.
An error allowed Beccles to score seven more points after the break before Wacokecoke turned on the style to roar past six players and score in the corner.
As rain began to fall, the match deteriorated as a spectacle and Suds only added one more penalty 13 minutes from time.
Another converted try brought Beccles some respectability and the match ended with frustrations boiling over into a fight that saw a Beccles player and Sudbury’s Summers shown a red card.
The match ended a few seconds early when the floodlights failed at Whittome Field with a storm about to hit Great Cornard, but the result was well and truly sealed by then.
Despite feeling his side have reached a points tally that will guarantee their London Three North East status for another year, Richards was setting no additional targets.
“We want to get as many wins as we can,” he said. “It’s all about our availability and selection — if we can put out the best team on our books then we have a really good side.”