Tigers Triumph Ends Losing Run
PUBLISHED: 12:06 25 January 2010 | UPDATED: 11:11 04 May 2010
A CATHARTIC sense of relief greeted the final whistle on Saturday as Ely Tigers secured a dramatic 10-8 win over Cantabrigians. The Tigers have been stuck in the grip of a miserable loosing run this season but their renowned determination finally bore fru
A CATHARTIC sense of relief greeted the final whistle on Saturday as Ely Tigers secured a dramatic 10-8 win over Cantabrigians.
The Tigers have been stuck in the grip of a miserable loosing run this season but their renowned determination finally bore fruit on Saturday as they secured victory with a last-minute drop goal.
Skipper Mitzman said afterwards "This was exactly the game we needed after the prolonged break, I have been saying that things would come together soon enough and today everything clicked."
"We have worked hard to gel as a squad and it has finally paid off. This confidence boost will only spur the players on and I'm sure we have now turned the corner."
The tigers came into the game without loose head prop Chris Day and Flanker Lee Coulson who both picked up injuries in training. Also second row Jon Hunt, and centres Lucas Reeder and Kieren Kennett were unavailable meaning selection was tough.
The game itself began slowly with both sides struggling to find their feet on what was a muddy porridge of a playing surface.
The Tigers worked well to hold Cantabs at bay, as the visitors worked hard to keep the home side pinned down in their own half. Time and again Cantabs looked to pick and drive at the Ely line and their persistence was finally rewarded on 15 minutes as they forced a penalty which was duly converted.
From the restart the Tigers began to apply some pressure of their own and, after much huffing and puffing, errant passes and missed opportunities they finally found a breakthrough.
Good work from Ben Forteath saw the ball chipped high into the Cantabs 22, bringing the inevitable panic that afforded winger Sheridan Mead time enough to pickpocket a sluggish back line for a try. Forteath duly converted to take the score to 7-3.
After half-time the visitors stepped up the tempo and a spell of impressive play saw them drive through the Ely pack to register a try of their own to take the lead.
With the game finely balanced, the game became fractious as both sides looked to gain the upper hand. Play became bogged down in the centre of the field and very little in the way of opportunities fell to either side.
Staring down the barrel of an 10th defeat, Ely braced for a final push and their pluck was rewarded in the most dramatic of fashions as Forteath received the ball from a ruck to drop over the posts with just seconds to spare.
Seldom has a drop-goal proved so crucial to Ely and the joy was evident across the faces of fans and players alike as the referee signalled for full-time.
The win moves Ely off the bottom of the Easter Counties League One, usurping Fakenham in ninth position.