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Haverhill Rugby Club's promotion chances take a big hit with away defeat to Ely II

Haverhill Rugby Club’s chances of promotion out of Eastern Counties Greene King League Division 2 West took a major hit at the weekend, with a 17-10 away defeat.

The title hopefuls lost to Ely II on Saturday to drop off the table’s pinnacle and concede top spot to divisional rivals Mildenhall Red Lodge.

Captain Zac Evans said the league title would be ‘very tight now’ with two defeats this season ‘throwing a spanner in the works’ of their promotion prospects.

Rugby action from Diss III V Haverhill/Mildenhall/Red Lodge mixed team..Mark Bullimore Photography 2019. (23903372)
Rugby action from Diss III V Haverhill/Mildenhall/Red Lodge mixed team..Mark Bullimore Photography 2019. (23903372)

“It’s going to be very tight now, we were hoping to stay at the top,” he said. “But two losses has thrown a spanner in the works, so we have to rely on others to misstep now.

“And at least we have another game against Mildenhall, so we do have that chance to close the gap.

“We’re obviously disappointed to lose a second game in the league, and the second time we’ve lost to Ely (the team to boot them out of the Cambridgeshire Junior Cup first round).

“But there were also positives to take from it; we were camped in their half for most of the game, we lost because of two breakaway tries.

“But the rest of the game was one of the best performances we have put in.”

Evans and Hamish Stewart scored two tries for the visitors as they amassed 10 points.

Haverhill are away to Cantabrigian III on Saturday (2pm) for their final match of 2019.

Evans said it was not the easiest time of year to have back-to-back home games, with Christmas affecting player availability.

“We didn’t have great numbers for Ely, only 16 players, so I’m hoping for much better numbers this weekend,” he said. “But it’s that time of year I guess when people are away.

“I’m confident though, if we can put in a performance like we did against Ely and make a bit more of pressure on the other team, we’ll do well.”

The club is holding its Christmas party for members on December 21 (7pm) at the club. Tickets can be bought behind the bar.

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