Heartbreak for Wisbech first XV as brave performance ends in single point defeat

A COURAGEOUS Wisbech first XV suffered the heartbreak of losing by a single point after they were beaten 24-23 by Upminster in a thriller at Harecroft Road.

Wisbech had raced into a 16-6 lead at half time thanks to three penalties from Mark Laws, and a converted try scored by Will Pettit after good work from James Napier.

But the away side soon regained their grip on the game, scoring two penalties and two tries, as their physical approach began to reap rewards.

With the score at 24-16 and the home side down to 14 men, after Tom Martell was sent off for ten minutes, Wisbech showed character to bounce back - Will Pettit scoring his second try of the day, converted by Laws.

With Wisbech behind 24-23 and the clock ticking, Laws had the chance to win the game in the dying seconds.

But Laws watched his drop goal attempt slide agonisingly wide of the posts, condemning Wisbech to the narrowest of defeats.

Wisbech captain Tom Long said it was a season’s best performance from his side.

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He said: “I’m proud of the commitment and courage shown by all 18 players today. It is bitterly disappointing to lose such a close match, however it is a very long season and we are still a very young team with a lot of personnel missing. As long as everyone remains positive and continues from here we will be OK.”

Elsewhere, it was a tough day for Wisbech 2nds as they were thrashed 81-0 by Norwich Medics.

But it was a different story for the talented youngsters at Wisbech Grammar School, as they romped to a 69-7 victory over King’s School Ely.

The under-12s and under-13s at the grammar school will also be watched by thousands of fans tomorrow, when they play at the Twickenham Stoop Stadium.

The young stars will play their house final matches in the half time interval of Harlequins’ Challenge Cup tie against Italian club side Cavalieri Prato.