Re­source­ful Blues deal with Eal­ing’s pow­ergame

The Rugby Paper - - Championship - By SAM ROBERTS

THIS was a game that lived up to its billing.

The cut and thrust of Bed­ford was more than able to fash­ion a good look­ing try against the blud­geon­ing power of Eal­ing.

But with the Trail­find­ers still in­tent on hunt­ing down Lon­don Ir­ish in the league, it was not for the faint hearted.

Bed­ford’s vic­tory was tes­ta­ment to the shots they with­stood as much as any­thing else; vis­i­bly smaller, they stood in the way of traf­fic time and again.

It had started in dou­ble quick time, no sooner had Will Hoo­ley’s early penalty sailed through the posts, than the Bed­ford back line pro­duced some neat in­ter­play down the right flank.

Rich Lane and Ryan Hut­ler com­bined and even­tu­ally Wales in­ter­na­tional Chris Czekaj eased into open space and cross.

Eal­ing re­sponded quickly and it was one of the Blues’ old boys who scythed through, pacey Jor­dan Burns round­ing full-back Lane with ease to see the vis­i­tors back to within three.

Eal­ing, how­ever, lost dis­ci­pline and the boot of Hoo­ley obliged to cre­ate a neat six-point half-time lead. But play­ing down the slope in the se­cond pe­riod, Trail­find­ers must have felt the game was still in reach.

An early se­cond half penalty from Craig Wil­lis pegged the Blues back but Eal­ing re­peat­edly gave up cru­cial field po­si­tion al­low­ing the Blues were able to re­group.

The pres­sure even­tu­ally told, though, and Eal­ing edged ahead via a pushover score.

But Bed­ford’s re­solve was ob­vi­ous.

Winger Dean Adam­son was once again their scor­ing saviour, but most of the plau­dits be­long in the for­ward pack.

The Blues squan­dered an op­por­tu­nity to rob Eal­ing of a los­ing bonus point as Lewis Robling steered a late penalty wide but this was as joy­ous as Gold­ing­ton Road had been in a long time.

Eal­ing’s Wil­lis said: “It was a proper game of rugby but I think we’ll kick our­selves on Mon­day morn­ing. Any mis­take we made, they seemed to cap­i­talise on.”

Bed­ford’s Lane added: “There were some awe­some de­fen­sive sets, We had a look in the week as to where we thought we could hurt them and it ended up a good win.”

Blues move level on points with Eal­ing.

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