Friendly victory for Saffron Walden at Peterborough

PUBLISHED: 07:38 03 September 2015

Mark Kimberley. Picture: Jamie Pluck

Mark Kimberley. Picture: Jamie Pluck


Following a couple of last minute change of plans, Saffron Walden RFC were pleased to receive an invitation to travel up to Peterborough RFC for a Friday evening game.

Following heavy traffic, most of the team arrived with about 30 minutes to spare and so the warm-up was curtailed, but playing under lights always creates a good atmosphere.

From the kick-off the home team started brightly and with Walden looking rusty Peterborough deservedly opened the scoring with a well worked try creating an overlap for their No.13 to ghost in around the outside and towards the posts for a 7-0 lead.

However, over the next phases of play Walden gradually found their way into the game.

Then after 15 minutes they found themselves deep inside their hosts’ half and a couple of well-worked plays saw the ball fed down the line to right winger Villmoni Devuto, making his Saffron Walden debut.

He side-stepped his opposite number to run in past the covering defence.

The next try was scored by a Walden forward as No.8 Nik Baker picked up a loose ball and dived over the line.

His score underlined the fact that Walden’s forwards were beginning to dominate the set piece.

Another try by winger Devuto followed just before half-time as Walden worked the ball wide after several phases of possession, and they went into the break 19-7 up.

Five minutes into the second half Walden worked the ball towards the centre with a couple of simple phases.

A sudden switch of play saw the ball passed down the blindside and hooker Martin Baldwin found himself on the left wing before using his speed to score in the corner for 26-7.

A few minutes later some scrappy play deep inside the home 22 saw Peterborough win the ball in the loose but then fail to clear it.

Baker was the first to react and he ran in from only a few metres to score his second of the match.

Although Peterborough were trailing they continued to test Walden’s defence, which looked good under the pressure.

They extended their lead when centre Mark Kimberley intercepted a pass to sprint under the posts from 50 metres to make it 38-7.

There was then another debutant try, this time for Bobby Elston as he got the ball on the left wing and beat a couple of tackles before scoring out wide.

Peterborough scored next with 10 minutes left on the clock as they broke down the centre and worked the ball downfield to make it 45-12.

Walden had the final say when unsurprisingly Devuto got his hat-trick as he found himself in space and cruised over to take the Walden tally above 50 points leaving full-back Tom Price to round off a fine kicking display to leave the final score at 52 -12.

There is another pre-season test this weekend when Walden entertain old rivals Enfield at Henham for a 3pm kick off.

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