London 2NE: Play-offs loom as Diss lose to leaders Chelmsford
- Credit: PA
Diss travelled to Chelmsford with high hopes that a bonus point win would eventually lead to automatic promotion.
The hosts however had different ideas and pulled away in the latter stages to all but secure the London 2NE title with just two games left to play.
With the slope and elements in their favour Chelmsford were able to carve out a 15-10 half-time lead. Diss had actually played well in the half and turned around with the conditions in their favour for what was presumed to be a second half onslaught.
Jack Peacock brought Diss back into the game following an early Chelmsford score with a well taken penalty.
Following intelligent play from the Chelmsford fly-half a further 10 points were added and Diss found themselves running into arrears at a rapid rate.
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As the half drew to a conclusion Paul Cayley found himself in space and for one in the twilight of his career produced on outstanding off-load to send Ryan Carter over. Peacock converted to take Diss to half-time in a positive frame of mind. Early Diss pressure in the second half highlighted the intent being shown by the visitors.
A further penalty from Jack Peacock and a Matt Trede try took Diss into an 18-15 lead with the final quarter approaching.
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Trede's try was a beauty crafted by excellent running from Tom Holt and a wonderful angle being run by Trede to finish off a free-flowing move.
At this point the game was there for the taking but for some inexplicable reason Diss took their foot off the throttle and allowed the home side the opportunity to attack with a freedom not seen since the early first half exchanges.
Chelmsford scored a well taken try through consistent phases and led 20-18 with 10 minutes remaining.
Diss rallied but precision deserted them and following an encouraging drive into the Chelmsford half the opposition No 10 intercepted a wayward pass and ran half the length of the field to secure the game.
In many ways the final quarter highlighted the fact that Chelmsford just wanted the spoils a little more.
A disappointing result now leaves the Diss squad with the opportunity of obtaining promotion through the play-offs, with an eight-point advantage over third placed Campion.
The two sides meet at Mackenders on Saturday and Diss will be assured of a second placed finish providing they do not lose the game – although whatever happens there is still a another home game against lowly Basildon to follow.
• In Greene King Eastern Counties Division One Southwold maintained their 100pc record with a 41-0 win at Mersea Island while Thetford were beaten 33-24 at Woodbridge.