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Scrappy victory puts D's into Shield semi-finals

PUBLISHED: 16:40 06 February 2008 | UPDATED: 14:10 02 July 2010

ESSEX PRESIDENT S SHIELD QF Dagenham 48 Wanstead 8 Dagenham made it into the semi-finals of the President s Shield, but the scoreline doesn t reflect what was a scruffy performance. Despite making several changes to the side that defeated Maldon last week

ESSEX PRESIDENT'S SHIELD QF

Dagenham 48 Wanstead 8

Dagenham made it into the semi-finals of the President's Shield, but the scoreline doesn't reflect what was a scruffy performance.

Despite making several changes to the side that defeated Maldon last week, the first 20 minutes were a frustrating affair for the home side.

They finally managed to take the lead when the ball was moved wide for Phil Crawley to score an unconverted try.

Wanstead hit back immediately to make it 5-5, but the D's managed to snatch a couple of scores before the break.

Again width was put on the ball and full back Kieran Clancy was on hand to score, before Nick Eriera, making his full debut after some impressive performances for the seconds, sprinted home under the posts.

Louis Stevens slotted the extras to make it 17-5.

The D's knew they were in a cup tie, and also felt that they knew where they were going wrong, but their accuracy was not quite what it should have been at the start of the second half either.

Wanstead pegged the deficit back to nine points via a penalty, but from here on, the D's upped the work rate and tempo.

Some good forward play and a change of direction from John Hobden allowed Paul Roberts to finish powerfully.

Jordan Wigham then crashed over to mark a good return from injury for him, before Roberts completed his brace, this time wide on the left, taking a couple of defenders over the line with him.

These scores took the game away from Wanstead somewhat, but they never stopped battling and were always looking to be inventive.

As the game neared its close, Dagenham added a couple of late scores, as the visitors threw caution to the wind in their own 22.

Stewart Ali notched the D's seventh try as he broke a couple of tackles, and the curtain was brought down by Ereira, who outpaced the defence to score.

Head coach Mark Collins said: "It's getting better every week. It was not an easy game, but we got a lot of possession and got the better of Wanstead.

"We grew more and more confident as the game progressed, even though we had to make a number of changes. I was very pleased with the weekend.

"We got them on the back foot from the start, but though they scored a try, the boys never got down about it and they grew as it went on.

"We have a selection headache now for the game against Bancroft, who are much-improved. The boys who are selected will have to step up to the plate. They have been great this year but have to keep it going.

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