Diss downed by Colchester
A trip to Colchester always looked a tough opening-day assignment for Diss and so it proved as they went down 55-5 on Saturday.
Nevertheless, the Blues made the journey in confidence after positive pre-season displays at a tournament in Stowmarket and under the floodlights against Southwold.
Early exchanges were very competitive with both sides trying to gain a foothold in the game.
However, it soon became apparent that Colchester were going to dominate through their forwards, having immediately placed the visitors under intense pressure at the scrummage and breakdown.
Diss found themselves 19 points down after15 minutes having lost possession at a number of crucial breakdowns and most worryingly having fallen off far too many tackles.
Line out possession was also proving difficult to obtain, coupled with the driving play of a totally dominant Colchester eight who were releasing quality ball to a backline keen on running the ball from all areas of the field.
Led by John Laurie and Jon Bergin in the forwards and Warren Wilby and Chris Beaird in the three-quarters, Diss began to produce a level of continuity that allowed the visitors to play at a more competitive level.
That said, a 31-0 deficit at half-time showed that the remainder of the game was going to prove a damage limitation exercise.
Having lost Chris Beaird through injury at the end of the half certainly did not help further prospects.
Progress in the second half showed a higher level of commitment with Connor McBryde and George Jones manfully striving to establish some sort of respectability to the score line.
As the Colchester eight tired and Diss obtained cleaner possession, scoring opportunities began to present themselves.
Unfortunately a series of handling errors allowed Colchester to capitalise to score another four tries.
Diss needed to keep the game simple and go back to basics. All too often the basic skills required at this level were missing.
Team spirit and the dogged resilience of players like Laurie, Matt Richards, Bergin, Jon Trede and McBryde eventually set up a try-scoring opportunity for Shaun Blyth, who cut a good line to score a well-deserved try.
Next on the agenda for Dave Smith’s charges is tomorrow’s home derby against North Walsham (3pm).