MATCH REPORT & HIGHLIGHTS V MOSELEY

It was a Boxing Day blockbuster at Billesley Common as Bedford Blues came out on the right end of a roller-coaster of a match against Moseley to consolidate their play-off position in the Championship with a 24-31 win, writes Bedfordshire on Sunday.

The Blues eventually out-scored their hosts five tries to four as both sides made light of the blustery conditions to put on a real spectacle for the crowd.

The match turned in the first eight minutes of the second half as two tries by full back Piers O'Conor helped Bedford turn a 14-12 half-time deficit into a 24-14 lead.

They proved to be far more clinical in the attack in the second half despite seeing less of the ball after leaving a few scores behind before the break.

Moseley were dogged enough to fight their way back into the picture twice, but the visitors held firm to record their third league win on the road this season.

The hosts began the game on the front foot and opened the scoring in the third minute as a maul following an attacking line-out easily forced its way over the line with long-serving hooker Adam Caves grounding the ball.

Glyn Hughes converted well, but Bedford should have hit back when they somehow managed to butcher a huge overlap on the left as the final pass from Alex Lundberg to George Perkins went forward.

However, another chance quickly came and this one was taken as Ollie Dodge was found in space down the left wing and his ball inside allowed Mike Howard to go in at the corner.

The conversion from Myles Dorrian drifted wide before Mark Flanagan claimed a vital steal at a line-out five-metres from the Blues' line that prevented the hosts getting another driving maul going.

Some flimsy tackling allowed them a second try, though, as Drew Cheshire was allowed through when he really ought to have been held, before his pass sent Greg King under the posts.

It was then Moseley's turn for their defence to fall asleep as Nick Fenton-Wells got away before timing his pass to give Perkins a comfortable run to the line and Dorrian converted.

A superb tackle from Cheshire then prevented Perkins going in again just a few minutes later as a helter-skelter first half continued, although Bedford's indiscipline was threatening to prove costly.

They managed to get into half-time still two points behind, very much in the contest and it took them just four minutes of the second half to go in front for the first time.

After receiving the ball from Henry Taylor, Dorrian sent through a perfertly-weighted kick towards the right that O'Conor only had to fall on to score.

The Blues soon had the try bonus point in the bag as Michael Le Bourgeois was found in plenty of space down the left wing before his ball inside sent O'Conor scurrying over for his second in quick succession.

Dorrian's conversion meant the lead was up to ten points with half an hour still to play, but Moseley were refusing to lie down and they found a route back into the game.

Hughes sent up a cross-field kick towards the right, which Kyle Evans did well to get to first ahead of Perkins to score, but Hughes couldn't add the extras.

Maintaining the theme of the game, Bedford quickly hit back as Dorrian found a big overlap as he picked out Le Bourgeois before he passed outside to allow Harry Wells to go over at the corner.

Dorrian converted superbly from the touchline, but back came Moseley one more time as Buster Lawrence squeezed his way through with nine minutes left of what was a pulsating encounter.

But despite the pressure they found themselves under in the closing stages, Bedford held on to claim the win and round off 2015 on a high.

Moseley: Foley, Cheshire, King, Pinches (Brazier 49), Evans, Hughes, Brown (Armstrong 49), Fidler (Warren 58), Caves (Tolmie 48), Gardiner, Charlton, Casson (Onojaife 58), Flagg (Siggery 61), Lawrence, Brightwell

Replacement not used: Hone

Bedford Blues: O'Conor, Tapley, Le Bourgeois, Dodge, Pekins, Dorrian, Taylor (Burns 73), Lundberg (Thompson-Stringer 68), James (Clare 45), Alo (Boulton 45), Howard, Flanagan, Buggea, Fenton-Wells, Conlon (Wells 53)

Replacements not used: Sharp, Jones

Referee: Craig Maxwell-Keys

Attendance: 1,431

You can see all the tries from the game by clicking HERE.

Next Home Match

Friday 24th November
1st XV Championship
Goldington Road
Kick-Off
7.45pm

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