Tigers go down to narrow defeat at Harwich

Harwich and Dovercourt 31 Ely Tigers 24

ALTHOUGH Harwich gained revenge for the heavy defeat by Ely earlier in the season, they will be disappointed that the score-line was not greater.

At times Harwich played some sublime flowing rugby, but they also squandered half a dozen chances.

Within four minutes the ball was fed out of a scrum to captain Sean Mills and quick hands saw the ball going through Adrian Dalby and back to him.

The ball eventually reached man of the match Nick Falevino to score. Sam Male fired over the conversion.

Six minutes later, another scintillating move involving Mills and Jay Hatcher saw Falevino take the ball on one wing, off load it and pick it up again on the other to score his second try.

With Male missing the conversion Harwich were 12-0 up inside ten minutes.

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Ely were reeling and this was the time to finish them off but Harwich just couldn’t find the right pass or option to open up their backs.

On the half-hour mark, Ely came back when a Harwich handling mistake saw the visitors kick through to score.

With the conversion missed, Ely were lucky to go in at half-time only 12-5 down.

The second half couldn’t have started better for Harwich with Hatcher taking the ball on and passing to Rob Wood.

Wood off-loaded to Dalby, who passed to Kier Blacker, and he finished well in the corner. With Male converting a difficult score, Harwich were now 19-5 up.

But yet again Harwich gifted Ely a try which was converted making the score 19-12.

This galvanised Harwich into playing the rugby they are capable of. Sam Jewell took the ball on passing to Falevino who linked with Hatcher in the centre. Hatcher’s power was too much for the Ely defence as he drove over to score a well-deserved but unconverted try.

With the bonus point in the bag, Simon Palmer made one of his dominating runs where the ball was recycled to Hatcher to score again. Male converted to make the score 31-12.

This was impressive rugby by Harwich, but Ely weren’t done. With Kyle Hutchins being yellow-carded, they scored a pushover try from the resulting penalty.

With the try converted it was now 31-19, and there was still time for Ely to score again late on.