Diss are no match for their impressive visitors
- Credit: Archant
Diss found Old Haberdashers in outstanding form and failed to respond completely to the challenge.
Playing at true pace and making very few errors allowed the visitors to exert pressure on the Diss line at crucial moments during the game.
The hosts yet again started slowly, conceding three extremely well-worked tries within the first 10 minutes.
Diss were falling off far too many tackles, thus allowing the visitors possession on the front foot from which they could launch a swathe of attacks at will.
Diss eventually responded after 20 minutes following a typical Stephen Hipwell drive. Connor McBryde kicked ahead, allowing Harry Gooderham to snatch the ball to open the home team's account. Barnaby Chenery then stepped up to slot a 40-metre penalty kick, bringing the home side back into the game.
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Unfortunately, Diss were unable to control possession and Old Haberdashers responded immediately, scoring again through their No8 James Clark. Clark was without doubt the man of the match, playing a superb off-loading game as well as continually punching holes in a feeble Diss defence. Diss reduced the deficit just before half-time with a Chenery try that had been crafted following an Arron Forest break.
A half-time score of 27-17 suggested that the game would be close in the second half. How wrong that proved to be. Old Habs seized on a Diss error and scored immediately from the restart, thus setting the home side the challenge of yet again having to play catch-up rugby.
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Connor McBryde scored for Diss and Chenery completed the conversion from wide on the touchline to reduce the deficit to eight points. Diss should now have taken control of the game but a lack of composure when in possession and the fact that Old Haberdashers were playing a brand of attacking rugby that Diss could not live with meant that the final quarter saw the visitors score five further tries. They were orchestrated through an ability to play the game at pace and with a simple and accurate set of handling skills.
A further McBryde try did give Diss a four-try bonus point that at least meant something could be taken from the game.