Holt 17 Diss 20: Groom has final say as Diss move top of London 2NE
- Credit: Archant
Diss scored a late try to edge home in a keenly contested local derby – and moved to the top of the London 2NE table as a result.
The visitors were relieved to hear the final whistle in the end, but they started strongly and dominated the early possession.
Holt did not help themselves with an early yellow card but it was 20 minutes in before Diss broke through with wing-forward Ryan Carter powering his way over the line for an unconverted try.
As the game progressed Holt managed to make some incursions into the opposition half with the resultant pressure leading to two penalties, the second of which was converted by Graham Ilsley. Carter was soon on the scoresheet again however when he touched down following a driving maul. The conversion attempt failed, leaving Holt 10-3 adrift.
With half-time approaching Holt's left-winger James Riley did well to collect a loose ball and ran 60 yards to touch down for a try converted by Ilsley which made the half-time score level at 10-10.
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Holt looked more lively in the second half and their back three of Riley, Tom Jackson and Matt Jary-Ryan were always dangerous with the ball in hand. Holt failed to take advantage of this period of possession and saw a penalty attempt go wide and allowed Diss No 13 Warren Wilby to cruise over for an excellent solo try which was not converted, giving Diss a lead of 15-10. As the game entered the final quarter Diss were down to 14 men due to a yellow card and Holt took advantage.
Diss lost possession from their own line-out and Holt counter-attacked swiftly with Jary-Ryan going over for a try converted by Ilsley to put the hosts 17-15 ahead.
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With the clock running down and Holt not helping themselves with another yellow card Diss encamped themselves on the home line.
Holt managed to hold on until Tim Groom touched down following a well-executed driving maul. The conversion attempt failed, leaving the score at 20-17 at the final whistle.
Holt's Woodfordes man-of-the-match was awarded to Tom Jackson for his excellent performance at full-back and his ability to deal with the high ball under pressure.
This was an outstanding local derby with bags of effort and graft from both teams. Ultimately Diss had enough confidence and experience to exert pressure in the key areas and at crucial times.