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Bedford Blues head into their final pool game of the British & Irish Cup knowing that a win in front of their home fans will guarantee a quarter-final place in the competition.

A hard fought 22-17 win over Ulster on a cold night in Belfast has kept the Blues at the top of Pool 2 but a win over Scarlets Select would see Bedford claiming a final eight spot for the first time since 2013.

Following Friday’s fantastic away win in Belfast over Ulster, Bedford Blues are gearing up for an all-important fixture this Saturday at home to Scarlets Select with a win guaranteeing themselves a British & Irish Cup Quarter Final spot – and we need our 16th man (KO 2pm).

Four wins out of five leave Mike Rayer’s men in strong contention for the knockout stages of this year’s Cup campaign with only a win keeping the progression in their own hands. Whilst a slip-up from Yorkshire Carnegie, London Welsh or Doncaster Knights could equal a home tie next up, but the Blues players are only focussed on their own challenge.

Bedford Blues took a big step towards the British & Irish Cup quarter-final as they defeated Ulster A 17-22 at Deramore Park on Friday night.

On a freezing cold evening in Belfast and on a true quagmire of a pitch, Bedford racked up four tries through Phil Boulton, Dean Adamson, Henry Staff and Steffan Jones to secure a vital bonus point.

The hosts brightly and used an effective kicking game to try and pin the Blues back during the early exchanges but Bedford soaked up the pressure with the scrum putting in a huge shift five metres from their own line to win a penalty and clear the early danger.

After a long break since their last game the Blues Academy were back in action on Saturday with a convincing win, in perfect conditions at Grange Road,  against Cambridge University U20s.  Ahead by 31pts – 0 at half time, Bedford withstood a spirited comeback from the students in the second half to end as winners by 50pts – 0.

The Blues had a great start with an early try from centre Paul Aguele.  A poor clearing kick from Cambridge allowed Bedford to counter, and Aguele went in from the half way line; full back Liam Shields converted, and it was 7pts – 0 to the Blues after two minutes.  

After a long break since their last game the Blues Academy are back in action this Saturday – away against Cambridge University U20s, Kick Off at 2.00pm.

The Blues make eight changes (one of them positional) to the starting line that lost to Nottingham before Christmas.

In the pack, Ben Thompson starts at prop, Jacob Moody and Callum Strachan at second row, with Harry Peterkin and Rahat Choudhury on the flanks.  In the back line Ben Phillips returns at fly half and scrum half Callum Tormey and winger Oli Beavis (both Oaklands College) make their Blues debuts.  The side will be captained by scrum half Olly Howard.

 

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