DIVISION ONE NORTH
Eton Manor 47
For the fourth match in a row Diss were involved in a high-scoring encounter on Saturday, though they were just edged out by visiting Eton Manor.
Both sides had scored converted tries within the first two minutes before the game had settled into any sort of pattern.
Stephen Hipwell broke from halfway to feed John Laurie, who raced over to respond to Manor’s earlier success.
Diss now controlled possession and strung together a series of attacking options setting up another platform close to the visitors’ 22.
Hipwell took advantage of a well-worked lineout to charge over to give the home side a well-deserved lead.
However, the leaky Diss defence soon returned, allowing Manor to cut through at least four tackles to tie the score at 14 points apiece.
And Manor soon capitalised on a Diss infringement at the breakdown to increase their lead by a further three points.
In the 20th minute, a sublime pass from Tim Groom sent Laurie over for his second try to restore the home side’s lead.
The game then imploded on two fronts during the last five minutes of the half.
Following an incident on the touchline, an Eton Manor player was red carded, while Diss’ Ed Hudson spent a brief period in the sin bin.
Three tries were then scored as defensive structures completely collapsed.
Manor capitalised first breaking through following poor ball retention, before Diss scored a beautifully constructed try through rapid movement of the ball out wide that eventually released Freddie Precious to score.
On the stroke of half-time Manor yet again seized on the Blues’ inability to retain possession from the kick off to lead 31-24 at the interval.
Diss had a numerical advantage, but they failed to fully capitalise and allowed Eton Manor to dominate proceedings throughout the second half.
Ironically, the Diss forwards had the upper hand, but a combination of naivety and poor execution allowed the away team to score for a converted try and three well struck penalties.
Diss did respond with a ferocious drive close to the Manor line to eventually be awarded a deserved penalty try.
With Dave Smith’s men some 16 points adrift with 10 minutes to go, Hipwell brought life back into the game by scoring a vital try that gave the home side a chance of a second bonus point.
Sustained pressure from the entire team eventually released Todd Wishart, who finished well.
Jack Peacock stepped up to convert to end a pulsating game, in which the losing side had managed to score seven tries.
Tomorrow seventh-placed Diss head to rivals North Walsham, who are one place higher in the table (3pm).
n James Winterbottom terrorised Lowestoft and Yarmouth II as Diss III swept aside their coastal rivals with a 62-7 home bonus-point victory on Saturday.
The former youth international second row spearheaded Diss’ 12-try assault as Benny Goodman’s men banished a miserable result against Watton last time out.
Winterbottom was the architect of Diss’ second try and produced two impressive hand-offs to score early on after prop Karlton Gray had got the score rolling with a quick tap-go try.
John Alexander, at number eight, picked it up and ran 40 metres with captain Benny Goodman on his shoulder and, after riding through various tackles, he released Goodman to race in from outside the Yarmouth 22. As the second half drew to a close Diss kept on top and the sides changed ends with the wind at the back of Diss.
Several tries were scored throughout the half, with the likes of Chris Trede and Dougie Moir getting in on the act.
Eddie Bullock — the Colts’ number 10 — also got himself a couple of tries.
Yarmouth managed to get a score to their credit but Diss returned back as Naz Girgin, who is on the injury comeback trail, helped Alexander score and winger Tom Clancy added another try to go along with his debut try of last week.