Last Gasp Try Sinks Tigers

THE Ely Tigers travelled to Cambridge to face off against old rivals Cantabs on a bright but cold afternoon with the Tigers in fine form as they began their pre match warm up. As the whistle blew to mark the start of the game the Tigers received the ball

THE Ely Tigers travelled to Cambridge to face off against old rivals Cantabs on a bright but cold afternoon with the Tigers in fine form as they began their pre match warm up.

As the whistle blew to mark the start of the game the Tigers received the ball and instantly found themselves under pressure. Seemingly rattled and unprepared for what followed the found themselves the wrong side of an opening try.

With the Cantabs number 12 crashing through the defensive line to score under the posts. The kick was good and the Tigers were left scrambling to realign at 7-0.

From the restart it was clear that although shaken by the rampant start of the Cantabs side, the Tigers slowly gathered momentum and began to turn the tables in their favour.


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The forwards, and in particular the front row lead by skipper Mark Mitzman, took great pleasure in destroying the Cantabs forwards in the set piece and consistently turned them over. And with this now very aggressive vantage point the Tigers back line started to find gaps in the Cantabs defence.

Under pressure in their own half Cantabs finally gave the Tigers the break they needed and following a penalty Ben Forteath slotted a great kick to bring the score to 7-3.

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Again the Tigers piled on the pressure and with some fantastic play the ball found its way in to the hands of Lucas Reeder who instinctively ran 70 meters breaking tackles to score in the corner.

The distance and angle made the kick tough and sadly it was missed but the score line looked much healthier at 8-7.

The Cantabs forwards had obviously been told to up the ante and came back hard at the Tigers but such was the Tigers strength in the scrumage that this was largely ineffective.

The half was very equal in terms of possession and pattern of play with both sides working hard to move the ball forward. In a moment of sheer frustration Cantabs gave away a penalty which Forteath easily made to take the Tigers further in to the lead. 11-7.

This seemed to rile Cantabs who came back hard but with all avenues of attack blocked they started to pick and drive in an attempt to wear down the Tigers defence. An Ely hand gave the referee reason to penalise the Tigers and with the Cantabs nine making good the kick the score line was reduced to a narrow 11-10.

The final 10 minutes of play were largely frustrating for the Tigers as although they found themselves close to the line on more than one occasion they couldn't quite get through. They were awarded two penalties but unfortunately both were missed.

In the dying minutes of the match and much to the horror of the Tigers players Cantabs managed to squeeze over the line for a try to take the lead. With no time to reply the Tigers were left with a sour taste in their mouths.

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