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Champions Halstead wrap up season




STORMING WIN: Brett Ballard evades a tackle to score during Eastern Counties Two South winners Halstead's last game of the season at Hadleigh Picture: Roger Cuthbert
STORMING WIN: Brett Ballard evades a tackle to score during Eastern Counties Two South winners Halstead's last game of the season at Hadleigh Picture: Roger Cuthbert

Halstead Templars completed their Eastern Counties Greene King Two South title-winning campaign in style with a 48-5 victory at Hadleigh II.

The visitors’ seven-try haul was started off by Matt Harwood, who was a constant source of attack intent, Josh Donaldson adding the conversion.

Brett Ballard crossed moments later, crashing back inside and through the disorganised defensive line to finish under the posts, courtesy of Jack Beckinsale’s pass from the base of a ruck.

Harwood turned provider for the third, finding Tom Ranson wide on the left for a 17-0 half-time lead.

Hadleigh’s replacements gave them a stronger look as play resumed but the Kings were only to be held out for 20 minutes before Harwood did the hard work before popping off to the supporting Donaldson, just as he was superbly tackled.

Halstead then scored twice more in succession, from Ed Merry’s quick thinking to scoop up a loose ball, with the player-coach then opting to add a drop goal conversion for 29-0.

Winger Sam Forrest, after having a first-half try disallowed, showed his turn of pace to dart through a defensive gap, also converting with a drop goal.

Hadleigh, whose first team forfeited their Division One Shield match at Thurston on Saturday, did manage to cross the try line, from a quickly-taken penalty that left them with a four on two advantage, before the conversion was missed.

The final try of the afternoon, from Forrest, was similar to his first with a simple break allied with a burst of pace through the centres that none of the home side could match.

It was then left to vice-captain and England Deaf international lock Ivan Fellowes to take the conversion, which saw him duly score his first ever points for Halstead.

The presentation of the league trophy is still to be made.



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