Seven finals in one day at Norfolk's festival of rugby
PUBLISHED: 12:40 06 May 2016 | UPDATED: 16:22 09 May 2016
Big crowds are expected to enjoy a feast of rugby when the inaugural Woodforde's Big Rugby Day is held at Crusaders RUFC tomorrow.
All seven end-of-season adult county finals will be played across two pitches at Beckhithe, in Little Melton, near Hethersett, in what is hoped will be a ‘festival of rugby’.
Gates open at 9am, with the first final at 11am and matches continuing throughout the day until the showpiece Senior Cup final between Diss and North Walsham starts at 3.30pm.
Norfolk RFU president Martin Crook, who has led the organisation of the event, said: “This is a first for rugby in the county.
“Every Norfolk rugby club is involved and our aim is to create a set-piece county-wide celebration for the sport which will inspire new participation and cement long standing friendships within the rugby community.”
The action gets under way with the quarter-finals of the Isadore Goldman Solicitors Touch Cup at 10am, which feature Norfolk Nomads, Norwich O2, Wymondham Badgers and Norwich Rebels, and then concludes with the final at 12.45pm.
The second XV Bowl final between North Walsham Raiders and Holt Owls is at 11am. This is likely to be an intriguing contest with Walsham having won the Greene King IPA Eastern Counties 3N title and unbeaten in 18 games, against a Holt team who finished second from bottom in the league above.
At the same time the Salver final will see the third XVs of Norwich and Diss battle on pitch two.
The action continues at 12.45pm with the Indigo Recycling Plate final between Wymondham and UEA, with the former having finished second in Eastern Counties One and the students winning the Midlands 3B title in the university leagues.
The R&L Engineering Junior Cup final is scheduled for 1.40pm, between Lowestoft & Yarmouth and Thetford. Again an interesting encounter is expected, with L&Y having finished ninth in London 3NE and Thetford in mid-table a level below in Eastern Counties One.
The first Chewton Rose Women’s Senior Cup final takes centre stage from 2.30pm, with Wymondham Wasps to face a team combined of UEA and UEA Medics players.
Diss and North Walsham then face each other in the M+A Partners Senior Cup final at 3.30pm. Diss conceded the trophy to Walsham last year due to their involvement in a promotion play-off and Walsham won the 2014 final 48-3 at Scottow, although Diss beat the Vikings in the two finals prior to that.
Entry costs £5 for adults and £3 for under-18s, with parking available.
Mustard TV will be recording the Woodforde’s Big Rugby Day, for broadcast at 7.30pm on Wednesday, May 11. The coverage, in association with Norfolk RFU, Fielding Cottage and Norse, will feature the entire Norfolk Senior Cup final clash between North Walsham and Diss. Mustard TV is available on Freeview channel seven and Virgin Media channel 159. The programme will also be available on-demand for two weeks at MustardTV.co.uk.