London League One North

by Steve Whiteman

A STRONG second-half performance helped Colchester overcome Essex rivals Eton Manor and claim a terrific victory at Mill Road.

After a fairly even first half, the Blacks ran away with the game scoring in all six tries to Manor's two.

Colchester's man-of-the-match Jack White had an excellent game at fly-half brilliantly using his kicking and passing skills to his side's advantage.

The scrums were mostly in the hosts' favour as were the lineouts, with the Blacks often winning turnover ball in both.

The experiment of playing George Liversidge with Will Brown in the centre worked well as they made many inroads through Eton Manor's defence.

And the return of prop James Mitchell and hooker Rhys Harley boosted the strength of the pack.

Manor kicked off and before long the referee awarded Colchester a penalty.

White kicked to the corner and the resulting lineout was won but when the ball was shipped out wide a Manor player intercepted it and ran well into Colchester's half.

The visitors won a penalty which their outside centre converted to give them a three-point lead.

Soon after, White again put the ball in to the corner for a Colchester lineout.

Hartley threw to skipper Liam Pickett and his fellow lock, Joe Colcomb piled over the line for his maiden first-team try, to make it 7-3 to the hosts.

Eton Manor restarted and before long launched an attack, moving the ball swiftly to their outside centre.

He broke through the Colchester defence to score and convert a try, to give the visitors a 10-7 advantage.

Shortly after the restart, Eton Manor won a scrum near their line and flanker Rob Pickard charged down the fullback's clearance kick.

The ball was moved through several pairs of hands to White who timed a grubber kick perfectly for winger Crozier to ground in the corner, moving the interval score to 12-10.

At the start of the second half, lock Elliott Castle replaced Colcomb for Colchester and scored on the right within minutes of joining the match.

Crozier converted and the Blacks' tails were up, as they led 19-10.

Brown used his electric pace to put the hosts back in Manor's half and good work by their back row of Rob Pickard, Ollie Pickett and Danny Whiteman led to a penalty that Crozier duly converted, stretching the hosts' lead to 22-10.

Brown was injured and Joe Flexman came off the bench to take his place soon after but Colchester were rampant.

They surged towards their opponents' line, winning a lineout and moving the ball blind for Hartley to score in the corner. This attack was swiftly followed by another when Liam Pickett crashed over for another converted try, to make it 36-10.

White kicked to the corner late on and a successful catch and drive lineout saw Whiteman claim the final try, as Colchester claimed a fine win.