Eastern Counties Ladies hosted Warwickshire Women at Stowmarket RFC in their first round match of the Gill Burns Women’s County Championship Plate.
Fielding the finest Ladies players from across Eastern Counties, including representation from 7 clubs and the Royal Navy EC and on the back of a hard fought victory over Essex Ladies in their warm up game expectations were high for a competitive game.
This was the case with the visitors drawing first blood with a try wide out on the right flank, this was however quickly countered by a try from West Norfolk Ladies’ Fullback Georgie Lingham who was on the end of a lovely pass from left wing Bury Foxes’ Steph Hanratty who drew the last defender on half way releasing Lingham who sprinted 50m to score under the posts, which was converted by Harwich Owls’ Annalise Allan to take the score to 7-5.
Warwickshire responded quickly retaking the lead with a further unconverted try with barely the first quarter of the game gone. The game then became a battle between the two forward packs, with neither yielding, but as the half time whistle approached EC Ladies broke the deadlock with Harwich Owls’ lock Mimi Montgomery powering over the line to score, the extras being added by Allan taking the half time score to 14-10.
After the break Warwickshire again used their forwards to great effect driving deep into EC territory, despite some brave tackling by the home side that kept the visitors out until the 60 minute mark when they scored their third unconverted try to again take a narrow one point lead 14-15.
However, this lead didn’t last long with Woodbridge Amazon’s Claire Brickley restoring the lead with an unconverted try to take the score to 19-15. EC Ladies then extended their lead with a try from Wymondham Wasps’ blindside flanker Libby Lockwood scored from a quick tap penalty powering over the line to score, Allan again adding the extras in an excellent display of kicking which ultimately proved to be the difference between the two team as Warwickshire Women matched EC Ladies try count with a fourth of their own in the dying seconds of the game making the final score 26-20.
After the game EC Ladies Team manager said “I am very proud of the team and they way they stuck at it coming back from behind on three occasions in the game and never giving up on themselves. The focus now needs to be on the next game away to Oxfordshire”
EC Ladies second game in the Championship Plate is Sunday 30th April away to Oxfordshire which will be played at Gosford All Blacks RFC 2pm KO
Team: 15 Georgie Lingham (West Norfolk Ladies), 14 Briony Davies (Shelford Ladies), 13 Kristin Kvalvik(Harwich Owls), 12 Maria Carpenter (Bury St Edmunds Foxes), 11 Steph Hanratty (Bury St Edmunds Foxes), 10 Analise Allan (Harwich Owls), 9 Georgie Palmer (Bury St Edmunds Foxes), 8 Stacey Hargrave Capt (Royal Navy), 7 Sam Chan (Shelford Ladies), 6 Libby Lockwood Vice Capt (Wymondham Wasps), 5 Mimi Montgomery (Harwich Owls), 4 Jasmin Clark (Bury St Edmunds Foxes), 3 Sophia John (Bury St Edmunds Foxes), 2 Kaylee Williams (Bury St Edmunds Foxes), 1 Charly Green (Wymondham Wasps)
Replacements: 16 Sami Rackman (BSE Foxes), 17 Tekura Maeva (Lakenham Ladies), 18 Natalie Palmer (BSE Foxes), 19 Naomi Dobner (Harwich Owls), 20 Holly Crook (Wymondham Wasps),
21 A Claire Brickley (Woodbridge Amazons), 22 Sonia Knowles (Lakenham Ladies)
EC Scorers: Georgie Lingham 1T, Mimi Montgomery 1T, Claire Brickley 1T, Libby Lockwood 1T, Analise Allan 3C