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Lowestoft & Yarmouth show fighting spirit in cup tie - but it's not enough

PUBLISHED: 07:34 28 April 2017

L&Y take on Crusaders at Gunton Park. Pictures: MICK HOWES

L&Y take on Crusaders at Gunton Park. Pictures: MICK HOWES

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Lowestoft and Yarmouth turned in a spirited display in the quarter-finals of the Norfolk Cup on Saturday before losing 43-26 to Crusaders.

L&Y versus Crusaders at Gunton Park. Pictures: MICK HOWESL&Y versus Crusaders at Gunton Park. Pictures: MICK HOWES

Looking to salvage something from a disappointing season that saw them finish second from bottom in their league, L&Y fought back from 26-12 down at half-time to level the scores before their challenge faded in the second half.

The hosts scored the first converted try in what was to be an entertaining game, with both sides intent on playing open, expansive rugby.

Crusaders soon replied when Jamie Dack was just held up short of the Lowestoft line from a resulting scrum and Peter Blinkhorn finished off a good back row forward move to race in under the posts, with Rob Loone converting.

Ryan Harris put the visitors in the lead with a touch down after the forwards driving run from their own 22 was swiftly moved out wide through several pairs of hands, with the conversion being missed. Back came L&Y and a quick switch of play gave their winger a clear run in the corner to level the scores.

Once again the Crusaders forwards moved through the phases as they drove out of defence from the restart, Conan Hoey, playing on the wing, was in support and sidestepped his way into the Lowestoft 22, Crusaders had support in numbers and it was Blinkhorn who touched down again, with Loone converting. A second Harris try took the half-time score to 12-26.

The second half began with the visitors wasting two good opportunities with the final pass and Lowestoft took full advantage, their back row forward scoring two good tries to level the score at 26-26.

L&Y’s resistance began to wane however as the Crusaders forwards turned up the heat, George King touching down following a driving scrum.

Loone converted and added a penalty before Dack ran through a tired Lowestoft defence from the half way line to complete the win.

L&Y’s try scorers in a spirited display were Tom Port (2), Airidas Savickas and Gareth Bowker.

The club now have the summer to prepare for the challenge of playing in a new-look London Three Eastern Counties League made up of sides from Norfolk, Suffolk and Cambridgeshire, with Essex now having their own section.

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