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Norwich face daunting test at London 2NE leaders Woodford

PUBLISHED: 09:15 19 October 2018

Norwich's Jonny Wheater tries to find a way through against Cantabrigian Picture: ANDY MICKLETHWAITE

Norwich's Jonny Wheater tries to find a way through against Cantabrigian Picture: ANDY MICKLETHWAITE

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Norwich return to London 2NE action after a week off with what is likely to be their toughest game so far, away at leaders Woodford.

Woodford appear to be a very different side to the one Norwich played last season, when they avoided relegation only on points difference, so they will be an unknown quantity for the visitors.

Norwich’s win at Cantabrigian two weeks ago - which followed three successive defeats - was solid and efficient in difficult conditions, with the problems experienced in tackling, ball retention and patience being resolved. All these areas and more are sure to be thoroughly tested tomorrow against a side who have won all five games so far while picking up maximum points.

Chris Parrott, Mike Lawton, Jonty Newton and Josh Wilson are unavailable but former captain Dave Micklethwaite makes a long awaited return to the squad.

Looking ahead to the game Director of Rugby David Everitt said: “We will need to be at our best to give them contest on their own ground but we are confident that we can come away with a result. The backs are unchanged but the forwards are without Josh Wilson and Jonty Newton, who were both very influential in the win against Cantabs, being replaced by Tom Moss and Dave Micklethwaite, who makes a first appearance this season after a major injury incurred at the start of pre-season. Phil Buckley is also back in the squad after injury.”

The Lions face Wymondham II at their new ground, having been promoted together last season while the AXV host Swaffham.

A rugby academy is being run over half term at Beeston Hyrne by former Ireland and Ulster Sevens player Mike Lawton for boys and girls in the U11 to U14 age groups. Details are on the club website (www.lionrugby.com) and Facebook page.

Southwold also a face a tough challenge in London 2NE, with an away match coming up at second placed Saffron Walden, who have also won five out of five.

Having started the campaign with a couple of wins, newly promoted Wold have suffered fourth straight defeats, with the latest coming in the Intermediate Shield when they lost 33-13 at home to Hammersmith and Fulham.

Having received a bye, Norwich have been drawn at home to Harpenden in the second round on November 10.

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