THREE NORTH EAST
Wisbech 41 Sudbury 5
Sudbury’s hopes of avoiding demotion to the Eastern Counties league took a nosedive as they were leapfrogged by fellow strugglers Wisbech.
Now third from bottom with a possible three being relegated, they face an uphill task with four games left to play.
Two of their opponents are in the top five and they will be away games for the Blues.
Graham Richard’s side face a daunting trip to league leaders Norwich on Saturday (2pm) before a trip to current fifth-place occupiers Cantabrigian.
Seven tries to one did not really reflect the game on Saturday as Sudbury retained the majority of possession throughout the game and an equal amount of territorial advantage.
But three interception tries from loose passes in the Sudbury half gave a flattering scoreline to the Cambridgeshire hosts.
Mark Laws got Wisbech on the board after five minutes when he intercepted a pass on his own 22 metre line to score under the posts, converting his own try.
Both teams tried to play open rugby and in the early exchanges Sudbury were putting the home side under pressure but knocked on or fumbled the final pass without score.
A move by the Wisbech backs after a quarter of an hour saw the centre find the gap and pass out to get them up to the five metre line, with a five lineout bundled over by the Wisbech forwards.
The penalty count was high with the home side happy to give away penalties in the centre of the park frustrating Sudbury’s efforts and it was again the 12 that gave Wisbech the break for their next try.
Andy Currie was Sudbury’s only scorer when he drove over from short range after yet another period of pressure in the opposition 22 but it was left to Wisbech to score on the final act of the half from a scrum on the Sudbury 22 and a number eight pick-up from the base of the scrum.
The second half started with Wisbech giving away yet another penalty 10 metres out. Sudbury opted for a quick tap but the fullback intercepted the pass on his five metre line and ran the length of the field to score.
Bart Minter did cross the line for Sudbury but the try was not given because the referee thought it was held up.
Wisbech scored again with a backs move on the half-hour and inflicted the final blow in the closing seconds when Sudbury failed to clear their lines from a mark and they scrambled over to score.
n Hadleigh lost 99-3 at league leaders Wymondham in Greene King IPA Eastern Counties One, leaving them four points adrift of third-bottom Southwold, though nine points above bottom side Thurston.
Eighth-placed Mersea Island visit Hadleigh on Saturday (3pm).
n Eastern Counties under-20s will play their RFU National Shield quarter-final match against Surrey at Sudbury’s Whittome Field ground on Sunday, April 7 (2.30pm).
Eastern Counties reached the quarter-finals following a 43-14 victory over Cambridge University.