Bedford Academy U19 v London Scottish U21
The Blues Academy ended their season with a nail biting finish against London Scottish U21s and a 34 pts - 32 win.
Bedford started well with a penalty from fly half Cameron Gregory-Ring, and a try from full back George Elliott, converted by Gregory-Ring, to go 10pts ahead after 10 minutes, before a succession of errors allowed London Scottish back into the game, with three tries, a penalty and a conversion to go ahead by 20pts - 10. Bedford narrowed the gap with a good try from a counter attack featuring the Blues back row of No 8 Dan Martin and flankers Ollie Walker and Kennett O'Neill, with skipper Martin scoring in the corner just before half time.
Bedford started the 2nd half with another series of errors allowing Scottish to score two further tries to go 32pts - 15 ahead after 5 minutes. The remainder of the game was a series of good Bedford attacks, and strong Scottish defence, as Bedford clawed their way back into the game. Further tries came from Elliott and two from Martin, to give him his hat trick, with two conversions from Gregory-Ring to give the Blues a 34pts - 32 win.
Blues Academy Director, Denis Ormesher, said .... "The game was a good reflection of the whole season; a mix of some basic mistakes, and some good rugby. When we played simple rugby it showed how effective the side can be."
“A win at the end of the season is a great way to finish but looking back the most satisfying aspect of the season is how the squad have developed. The squad has improved individually and collectively over the season and some of the youngsters offer real potential for the future. The real test of the Academy is how many players we get through to the Blues 1st XV squad. A number of them will be training with the Blues 1st XV in pre-season training this summer and will be hoping to impress Mike Rayer and claim a spot in the Blues senior set up.”
“Thanks must go to a long list of people who helped to make a successful season; the physio team of Harriet Cole and Kelly Loftus for keeping repairing injuries; Strength & Conditioning coach Matt Williams who has made real improvements in their conditioning; Team Manager John Kearsley for all of the unseen work behind the scenes; Frank Ring for his match videoing, which has allowed players to improve analysis of their performance; Geoff Irvine, Gareth Davies and Mike Rayer for their encouragement and support over the season; the players’ parents who have been supportive over the whole season; and finally the coaching team of Head Coach James Hinkins, and Alan Brown, Rich Candlin, Gregor Gillanders, Steve Guest, Corey Hircock and Neil Harris who worked well to develop the squad.”
Bedford: Joe Foreman, Josh Taylor, Will Dyer, Joss Morgan, Matt Norfolk-Clarke, Kennett O'Neill, Ryan Brett-Williams, Dan Martin (capt); Kieran Duffin, Cameron Gregory-Ring; Scott Lyle, Dan Hope, Michael Phillips, Eric Edwin; George Elliott: Replacements: Garth Spencer, Ben Ibrahim, James Parsons, Reece Lane, Ollie Walker, Ben Calder, Nico Defeo, Max Titchener:
Photo: (C) BGRPHOTOGRAPHY Frank Ring