London One North: Eton Manor head coach Jamie Connors backs Sudbury to move up the table

PUBLISHED: 10:00 30 November 2016

Eton Manor's Chris Smith crosses over for a try at Sudbury (pic: Martin Pearl).

Eton Manor's Chris Smith crosses over for a try at Sudbury (pic: Martin Pearl).


Wanstead-based club made it six games without defeat at the weekend, though were made to fight for victory

Eton Manor's Jack Sullivan grabs a line-out at Sudbury (pic: Martin Pearl).Eton Manor's Jack Sullivan grabs a line-out at Sudbury (pic: Martin Pearl).

Eton Manor head coach Jamie Connors doesn’t expect Sudbury to remain at the bottom of the London One North for long after beating them narrowly 15-8 last weekend.

Debutant Chris Smith and Luigi Martelletti crossed over for the visitors at Whittome Field with Callum McKie kicking a penalty and Smith adding one conversion.

Sudbury, who have just one victory and a draw to their name this season, led for long periods and Connors was impressed with the Suffolk outfit.

He said: “We spoke quite a bit about them to the players and how much they had improved and how they had actually been playing really well lately.

“They had a draw with Chingford and went really close to winning at Brentwood so we knew we couldn’t take them lightly or underestimate them. It proved to be the case. They were well drilled, tackled their hearts out and were hard to break down.

“We dominated in the first half, yet it was only a try each and a draw at the break when we maybe should have been one or two tries up.

“But we just couldn’t quite break them down and I don’t think they will be at the bottom come the end of the season that’s for sure.”

Connors was delighted to have McKie involved at Sudbury after a year out having played an integral part during their promotion campaign in 2014/15.

Smith caught the eye on his debut last weekend while Manor’s academy graduate Chris Vickers was handed an opportunity.

“We had a couple of new guys involved so we had Chris Smith playing in the backs and another young lad called Chris Vickers playing in the back-row,” said Connors.

“Vickers has been at the club since he was young so it was quite nice to be able to blood a couple of new players in. It is just about making sure we keep improving our depth.

“It was really good to have Callum back in the mix, although he was slightly out of position playing 12, but it was good to have him available because he’s a great player.”

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