Swaffham 43 Watton 20

A new set of shirts, a hat trick from Adam Potter and a good wingers try from Tom Flowers, gave Swaffham a bonus point and a 24-13 lead at half time.

Watton had begun strongly and soon had penalty options inside the home 22, but strangely went for the goal attempt rather than push home their advantage. A successful kick put the visitors 3-0 ahead, but it wasn’t long before Swaffham gained the lead through Potter, converted by Jones, and one which they never relinquished.

Another Potter try followed after an attempted chip through rebounded off a Watton player into his arms and he strolled over under the posts, making the conversion a formality. Some say luck – but you have to be in the right place and react accordingly. 14-3 to Swaffham.

Watton had their best phase of the game soon after and put the Swaffham line under some pressure. The resultant try line drop out, after a player was held up, was poorly followed up by Swaffham, and when Watton ran it back, the defence was lacking. A 14-10 score line was the closest it would get, as Swaffham responded strongly to their own lack of concentration, and proceeded to score the best two tries of the half through Flowers and Potter. Neither conversion was successful, and with Watton taking another kick at goal, the half ended with the home side 24-13 ahead.

The first score of the second half was going to decide the outcome of the game and it was Swaffham who started well, attacking the visitor’s line with several waves of forward play, which eventually put Jack Eveleigh over in the corner, converted by Ed Jones for an unassailable lead of 31-13. The game became somewhat dull for a while as both teams’ handling and focus went missing, and several injuries spoilt the entertainment for the large crowd.

A converted try for Ben Davidson put Swaffham further ahead and a big score was on the cards, but Watton fought back and ran in under the posts after some good phases to keep the match interesting at 38-20.

There was a satisfying end to the game when Swaffham were awarded a line out 15 meters out and the ref called “last play”. Everyone on the touchline expected the ball to be kicked dead after the line out, but from a set move, Swaffham formed a driving maul and Rob Smith was on hand to dot the ball down for Swaffham’s seventh try of the day.

With two more home Breckland derbies against Thetford (29th Oct) and Dereham (12th Nov) there will still be a few exciting matches to come at North Pickenham Road before Christmas.