Sat 16
1st XV
Walden gain a hard fought victory.

Walden gain a hard fought victory.

By Graham Marshall
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Great work from the pack to set the up platform for a much needed win.

Walden entertained Ipswich hoping to overturn the defeat they suffered back in October.
Even though the wind was slightly against them Walden started brightly and scored after only 2 minutes when after regaining possession from the kick off the ball was fed down the line and fullback Ivan Karsten scythed through a gap in the Ipswich defence to score a converted try to go 7 points up.
5 minutes later Walden doubled their lead, Walden attacked from deep inside their own half with Karsten chipping over the defensive line to regather the ball carrying it to just beyond the half way line. As he was about to be tackled he off loaded to flanker Alex Packenham-Walsh who out sprinted the covering defence for another converted try.
Walden looked good but Ipswich hit back forcing Walden to turn the ball over and they then set up a series of phases gradually working their way up field, despite some valiant defence they eventually worked the ball over the line. 14 - 7 after 12 mins.
From the kick off Ipswich worked the ball deep into Walden territory and when Walden had a player sin binned for a high tackle, Ipswich made the extra man tell scoring 2 tries in quick succession to take the lead 14 – 21 with still 15 minutes to play in the half.
Restored to 15 men Walden were soon back on the attack and with 10 minutes of the half remaining they set up several phases getting to within 10 metres of the try line.
Some quick thinking by Centre George Menhinick as he picked up from the base of a ruck and spotted no covering defenders in front of him ran unopposed over the try line.
19 – 21 after 30 mins.
5 mins later Walden retook the lead when Ipswich were penalised for slowing down the ball at a ruck. Walden kicked the points to leave the half time score at 22 – 21.
The second half was a much tighter affair with both defences on top, for the first 20 mins the game was played in the centre of the pitch with neither side gaining any real advantage.
A fine clearance kick by flyhalf Tom Price playing his first game for several weeks took
play to the half way line. From the Ipswich throw No8 Brad Baker stole the line out ball and Keegan Diggons having a fine game at scrum-half passed to Price who found right winger Ben Stapleton coming into the line at pace. He ran through a gap and carried the ball towards the Ipswich 22, as the Ipswich full back came across he deftly chipped the ball ahead towards the left corner, his opposite winger, captain Paul Marshall sprinted over to dot it down for the Bonus point try capping a fine flowing move, 27 -21.
This crucially meant Ipswich would have to score a converted try to win the game with only 15 mins of the half remaining.
The visitors threw everything at Walden but the whole team stood firm and used every last ounce of energy to stop them from getting close despite knowing that one missed tackle could cost them the game.
Eventually the clocked ticked down and Walden regained the ball to clear it to touch to take a well earned win.
A special mention must go to the Walden pack who excelled against larger opposition, parity at the scrum and a dominant line out with both Brad Baker and Man of the Match 2nd Row Joe Robinson winning all Walden and most of Ipswich throws.
A good day for the club with the Saxons beating Diss 2's 27-26 with the last kick of the game.
Both teams now take a well deserved week off when the 1's travel to 3rd placed Stowmarket and Saxons host Norwich 2's.

We are always on the look out for new players to play either in the first team in London 2NE or the Saxons (2nd team) in Eastern Counties 1West, if you are interested in joining our friendly club please contact either or

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Match details

Match date

Sat 16, Feb 2019




London 2 North East

League position

Saffron Walden