Discussion in 'RFU Championship / British-Irish Cup' started by bristol-iain, Sep 26, 2009.
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Bedford (0) 5 Bristol (6) 6
Report when I get it (when it's on the official site :lol: )
(so I don't get my ass sued)
"Bristol Rugby find themselves at the top of the 2009/10 Championship this afternoon, having beaten Bedford Blues in an achingly close battle at Goldington Road. Final score 5-6.
It wasn't pretty, but with both teams determined to hold onto their unbeaten title so far this season, it was never going to be. True to the Bristol spirit, forwards including David Blaney, Roy Winters and Dan Montagu dug deep to hold the score, whilst Lee Robinson crossed the line before referee Greg Garner denied the try, deeming the pass forward.
In truth, there was little difference between the two sides, both battling it out for the full eighty minutes before a missed penalty kick from James Pritchard, seconds from full time, awarded Bristol the win.
It was certainly a day that Pritchard will want to put behind him, missing a total of 11 points which could have seen his side remain at the top of the league for another week. But despite falling from the top spot, Bedford are still yet to concede a try with Bristol's points coming from two penalties off the boot of Adrian Jarvis.
Bristol found themselves defending in their own half for the first twenty minutes of this afternoon's match, as Bedford continued a series of attacks further into their 22. Bristol put in some impressive defensive work to hold off what seemed like an inevitable opening try for the home side, forcing the handling errors and digging in deep to restrain Bedford from crossing the line.
After an opening period on the back foot, it was now Bristol's turn to build the attack, with prop Mark Irish making a crucial break into Bedford's 22, offloading to Jack Adams who followed suit, edging play closer to the try line. Eager to disrupt Bristol's attack, Bedford were penalised for coming offside and Adrian Jarvis secured the first points of the game with 20 minutes gone, 0-3.
Bedford responded with determination of their own, bringing Bristol right back into their own half, building the phases before excellent work by the Bristol forward's stole the turnover ball. Continuing to impress, the forwards performed superbly at the line-out, with Club Captain Roy Winters running the calls throughout the eighty minutes.
With the game now evenly matched, excitement kicked in amongst supporters with the backs making some cutting breaks from deep, including Adams who twice just lost the ball forward whilst making tracks for the line.
There were a few moments when Bedford again seemed set for the opening score, largely down to some nervous handling by Bristol who lost the ball in attack, handing the home side a free run for the line. But with that dogged spirit never faltering, Bristol got back on top and were awarded a second penalty for infringement at the scrum. Adrian Jarvis sent the ball between the uprights to take Bristol ahead by 6.
Going in at half time with no points on the board was probably not an all together accurate account of Bedford's first half performance, but Bristol were consistently solid in defence and for that, they deserved their lead at the break.
The second half proved a dramatic affair, with Bedford scoring the only try of the game, orchestrated by full back James Pritchard who made a break on the wing inside Bristol's half before offloading to Luke Fielden who crossed the line. A sign of things to come for the fullback, Pritchard missed the conversion, denying his side the lead.
With only one point seperating the sides, Bristol increased their tempo, sending play through the hands of Luke Eves and Jack Adams in the centre before a offload from Wayne Thompson set Lee Robinson clear for the try down the wing. With the Bristol supporters seconds away from celebration, Garner dissalowed the score for a forward pass.
Bristol fell foul of the referees whistle consistently in the second half and as a result, gave away unnecessary possession, leaving themselves defending for large portions of the game. Substitutions, including Redford Pennycook, Darren Crompton and James Phillips, kept the defensive effort strong and despite some serious moments of caution, Bedford failed to make anything of their possession.
Tensions now at a high, Bristol twice gave away penalty attempts in the final minutes of the game. Allowing Bristol a get out, Pritchard missed the first before a second penalty, and final chance to take the win, was awarded. Lining the ball up directly in front of the posts, the crowd silenced before a sea of Bedford groans let those who couldn't bare to watch know that the Pritchard had missed and handed Bristol their fourth consecutive victory.
This was the first of three tough fixtures for Bristol in the coming weeks, and things definitely seem to be on the up for the West Country club, who now sit at the top of the table with next week's derby against Exeter Chiefs clearly on the horizon."
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