Speedy Sudbury’s demolition job leaves Harlow chasing shadows
Sudbury totally demolished Harlow at Whittome Field on Saturday in a game which many had predicted would be a close encounter.
Harlow have had a reasonable season up until now and were ahead of Sudbury in the league until very recently.
It was thought that former Sudbury coach Graham Richards, now at Harlow, would use his knowledge of the home team to formulate his game plan.
But on the day Sudbury swept them aside, and but for a couple of soft tries Harlow were rarely in the game as the hosts made it seven straight wins.
From the kick off Sudbury established field position in the Harlow 22 and nearly scored from the first move of the game. Man of the match Jack Dachtler dominated a couple of early lineouts to maintain the pressure.
After several near misses, Sudbury were held up over the line, and from a five-metre scrum after seven minutes, the ball was shipped out for the hosts to take the lead.
Sudbury’s ball handling was superb, Harlow had no answer to the fast pace and it was 14-0 after 12 minutes.
A quarter of an hour into the game Harlow made their first foray into the Sudbury half and secured a lineout in the 22.
They threw long, and ran through an off-guard Sudbury defence to score.
Two quick tries was the reply from the home side. All 15 players were enjoying throwing the ball about, eventually finding the wide outside. From the restart Sudbury surged forward again to score the bonus point try.
Sudbury’s scrummaging was superb all afternoon, and they easily pushed back a heavier pack at nearly every scrum. From a scrum on the Harlow 22, Sudbury again used quick ball into the centre to score.
Harlow rallied and had a good passage of play but were made to work hard for every metre gained.
They were penalised and a quick tap by Frazer Beckett saw him run 65 metres almost unopposed to score. Another good run from the backs increased the score to 45-5 at half time.
Sudbury switched off during the break and for the first 20 minutes of the half seemed to be going through the motions.
Harlow were posing no real threat and Sudbury seemed to be content with containing the situation and the score line.
Then they woke up and again started to entertain the largest crowd of the season and, in the last 10 minutes, put five more tries past a very weary Harlow.
With the last move of the game, Harlow again surprised the Blues with a run down the wing to score, which was met with very little resistance.
Hat-tricks from Jonny Taylor and Austin Beckett contributed to the big total, but nearly all the scores came from moves involving several of the team.
n There is no senior rugby at Sudbury this weekend.
n Halstead Templars, unbeaten in Eastern Counties League division 2S this season, visit division 2W Mildenhall and Red Lodge in the final of the Suffolk Plate on Saturday (1.30pm). The prize for the winners is a quarter-final place in the Suffolk Cup.
n Hadleigh beat Colchester III 29-2 on Saturday in Eastern Counties League 1S. Hadleigh Falcons were beaten 33-29 at Thurston II in Division 2S.