Excellent win – but Diss make hard work of it against Saffron Walden

Diss, blue, were victorious on Saturday. Picture: JOHN BULLOCH

Diss, blue, were victorious on Saturday. Picture: JOHN BULLOCH - Credit: Archant

Diss returned to winning ways on Saturday to complete a most satisfactory first half of the season.

It has to be said however that Diss were in the festive spirit to allow Saffron Walden the opportunity to stay in the game right until the end.

Overall Diss were certainly the better side, dominating possession, territory and the breakdown from the word go. They were intent on attacking from all areas and suffered as a consequence when Saffron Walden intercepted an ambitious pass to open the scoring. On 13 minutes Jack Peacock replied with a well-taken penalty following driving play from the entire pack.

Diss were now totally dominating all facets of the game and exerting extreme pressure at the scrummage. On 30 minutes, Dougie Moir broke from the back of a forward moving scrum to score. Peacock hit the post with the conversion but Diss now had the lead at 8-5.

On 38 minutes the hosts scored their own converted try, following a deft crash ball, that allowed their centre to touch down close to the posts. The successful conversion meant that Saffron Walden led 12-8 at half-time.

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The heavy nature of a wet pitch and a trailing wind now played in the visitors' favour. Diss began the second half on the front foot and following an outstanding individual break, John Laurie scored a superb try that was yet again converted by Peacock. Now was the time to take a clear advantage and for Diss to show their superiority. Scrum-half Jo Seaman was introduced from the bench and had an immediate impact. On 60 minutes he broke clear and off-loaded to a rampaging Peacock to score under the posts. Peacock converted his own try to extend the Diss lead to 22-12.

Saffron Walden were now there for the taking but careless decision making and over ambitious handling allowed them the opportunity to score a further unconverted try to close the gap to 22-17. On 68 minutes Seaman broke again and this time offloaded to prop forward Peter Bray who crashed through two tackles to score. Peacock converted again to give Diss a 29-17 lead with 12 minutes remaining.

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In previous weeks Diss would have comfortably closed this game out but poor handling yet again allowed Saffron Walden the opportunity to score a further converted try to leave the last 10 minutes on a knife edge. Diss held firm and relied on the dominance of their forwards to see them home.

To the neutral this was an excellent and fully competitive game of rugby, superbly refereed. It was not a classic performance but one that secured all the points and set up the second half of the season most encouragingly.

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