Essex League 1A

HARWICH enjoyed a big victory on their travels at Witham.

The game started well for them, winning the early exchanges, and it was not long before they opened the scoring.

Front-row forward Rob Wood benefitted from good build-up play to make it over the line for the first try.

Full-back Sam Male slotted the conversion for a 7-0 lead.

With their forwards scrummaging well, Harwich dominated possession and kept to their structure and it was not long before they were over the line again.

Skipper George Brunning galloped over after taking a fantastic off-load from back-row partner Josh Edwards.

Male was again good for the extras.

Sensing there were points available, the backs went through some good phases of play, leaving centre Alex Cullen an easy run-in to score a five-pointer for 19-0.

However, Male had a kicking malfunction with the relatively easy conversion.

Winger Adam Eldridge was the recipient of some hard running, expansive back play and scored a try in the corner.

The difficult conversion was missed.

With the half coming to a close, Harwich made a good touch kick, putting Witham under pressure in their own 22-metre area.

Outstanding lineout play saw the ball moved quickly out to the centres, where Cullen again crashed over the line for his second try of the match.

Male improved it, leaving the half-time score 31-0.

With the second half underway, it was not long before Lewis Kerley, making his first start, stepped inside the cover defence and dived over for a try.

The conversion was missed.

Not to be outdone, it was not long before the forwards were able to catch and drive from a lineout, giving Wood the simplest of touchdowns for a brace of tries and Male converted.

During this period, the visitors wasted some good possession when they should have improved the scoring.

However, man-of-the-match, coach Cullen was again the benefactor of good back play, scoring his hat-trick try which Male converted.

With the game moving into the last quarter, winger Adam Palmer received the ball just inside his own half.

He set off on a mazy run, bumping off would-be tacklers as he made his way to within ten metres of the line, where he was eventually tackled.

Great support from hooker Jack Cairns saw him dive over for the try which Male converted.

With time running out, it was Male himself who scored and converted the last try of the game to make the final score 64-0.

Replacement winger Sam Jewell, who took to the field to replace the injured Eldridge said afterwards: “After the frustration of not playing last week, it was good to get out there again and see some of the hard work from training bear fruit on the pitch.

"We’re all buzzing now to go again in the cup next week.”

Harwich entertain Beccles in national cup competition the Junior Vase tomorrow, with kick-off at 2.30pm.