Fakenham defeated in final home game

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Fakenham’s 19th and penultimate league game saw them beaten 32-20 by Newmarket at the Stringer Ground.Newmarket went into the game knowing that a victory would see them promoted from Counties 2 Eastern Counties.The visitors stunned Fakenham with three tries, two of which were converted, in the first 15 minutes, all through quick speed of ball, strong carries and a good offloading game.Once the home side managed to stem the tide, they began to build their foothold in the game – and ten minutes after the third Newmarket try, Fakenham got themselves on the board.From a scrum in the middle of the park, number eight Adam Lingwood picked the ball and made good ground before putting boot to ball. It gave Newmarket a lineout just inside their own 22, but Fakenham were able to disrupt and drive them back, before loosehead prop Rory Singleton managed to rip the ball away and dot the ball down in the corner.Fly-half Lloyd Marshall was unable to add the conversion. Newmarket held a 19-5 advantage going into the break.Fakenham knew they needed to score first in the second half and went on the attack, and a Marshall penalty saw them reduce the deficit.The away side then kicked three points of their own to cancel out Fakenham’s, before a further penalty extended their lead to 17 points. The second Newmarket penalty was nailed from an impressive 45 metres, even if it was wind-supported.Fakenham continued to attack, but Newmarket’s defence continued to hold firm in the face of repeated attacks. Eventually, after several pick-and-go’s from the forward pack, the ball was worked wide to the right, with centre Ian Williamson providing the final pass for Murray Tindal to run onto a dot down in the right-hand corner.Newmarket soon hit back to score by the posts with a successful conversion following. Fakenham did not give up and again went on the offensive. A maul was set in open play, before winger Ashley Stewart got bored on his wing, got involved with the drive and managed to rip the ball as the maul petered out, spinning and crashing over the line.Marshall slotted the extras with the final act of the game.Promoted Newmarket ran out deserved winners on the day, being far more clinical in their execution.The Barsham Brewery man of the match went to flanker Joe Airey, who put in a typically tireless performance.On Saturday, Fakenham travel to Mersea Island for their final league game.

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