Doncaster Knights v Bedford Blues

Saturday, 24 September, 2016 - 14:30
1st XV Championship
Lost 30-22

It was a case of close but no cigar for Bedford Blues on Saturday afternoon as they went down 30-22 to Doncaster Knights at Castle Park.

It was a back and forth game throughout with the lead changing hands four times, but ultimately it was the hosts who took the spoils late on as Bedford finished the game with 14 men.

Tries from Jake Sharp, Jason Hill, Tom Farrell and Jacob Field earned the Blues a bonus point, but two tries for the Knights in the last ten minutes after Ben Adams was sin binned, secured the win for the hosts.

It was a tense game throughout with both sides defence working overtime but a penalty at the scrum gave Doncaster a chance in the seventh minute and Dougie Flockhart made no mistake with the boot.

Bedford weren't deterred though and started pressing the Doncaster defence, but the hosts held firm before turning the screw in the 19th minute when Bedford conceded another penalty. The ball went to touch and the Knights maul did its job before the ball came out to Paul Jarvis who went for the line but was stopped just short. Flockhart was on hand though and the ball was popped to the fullback who went over but couldn't convert his effort.

The Blues fired back quickly though and scored their first try in the 21st minute. Donny were on the attack through Glen Young, but as the ball came out of the ruck, a loose pass was picked up by Sharp who hurtled over the line but he couldn't convert.

Bedford finished the half in the ascendancy and made their attacking prowess count. Jordan Burns thought he was over after Donny fluffed a pass back but the ref had played an advantage. It mattered not though as a quick tap penalty saw the Blues cross the line but they were held up. A scrum followed and after several pick 'n' go moves, Hill crossed the line but Sharp hit the upright as the half ended 8-10.

Doncaster came out in determined mood after the break and it took just three minutes for them to retake the lead. A solid Knights scrum set the platform before Mat Clark broke through the defence and scored under the posts with Flockhart slotting the extras to make it 15-10 before adding a long range penalty in the 49th minute.

The Blues continued to battle and they got their reward in the 57th minute when Doncaster kicked clear but the ball was returned by Ollie Dodge who broke the defence and then offloaded to his centre partner Farrell who crossed the whitewash with Sharp converting.

Three minutes later and Doncaster were down to 14 when Clark was carded and Bedford took advantage as they sent the resulting penalty to the corner. The lineout drive did its job with replacement hooker Field dotting down.

Doncaster defended well despite being a man down and then it was Bedford's turn to feel the wrath of the referee as Ben Adams was carded for bringing down a maul. Donny went to the corner and then bulldozed their way over with Latu Makaafi scoring and Flockhart making it 23-22.

With time ticking away, Doncaster made the numerical advantage count as Tyson Lewis broke through the midfield before passing wide to Jarvis who raced over in the corner and Flockhart converted to deny the Blues a losing bonus point although they did pick up one for the four tries.



See more pictures courtesy of Nigel Rudgard at