Tough visit to Rossendale
Away trip yields impressive result in bruising encounter
After much work to bring a side together by Captain Jordi Gore and Director of Rugby Michael Gallagher a strong side made their way to the northern reaches of Manchester to face Rossendale in the cup. Unfortunately traffic got the better of some bedians and it was a mere 12 people who took part in the warm up, with a strong 16 by the end of the warm up and the final sub turning up at the stroke of kick off it was less than ideal preparation.
Situations like that have distracted Old Bedians teams of yesteryear but not on this day. Strong and direct forwards running took Old Bedians immediately into the Rossendale half and it wasn't long before Pete 'Scouse' Wall, on return from injury, crashed over from short range. This unfortunately was as good as it got in the first half. While defence was good, we struggled in attack loosing fluency in tough conditions. Talismanic ten Michael 'Aussie' Gallagher succumbing to injury coupled with a struggling scrum, poor communication and high levels of intensity from the Rossendale forwards led to the home side scoring out wide bringing the game level for half time.
Discussion at half time centred on rediscovering that fluency of the first ten minutes, with a focus on forwards running in pods and recycling quick ball. This was quickly forgotten as Rossendale took the lead shortly after the restart, with Prop Scouse departing due to injury this could have been the beginning of the end. However this finally awoke the Bedians pack, who sprung into life in the second half re-discovering the early teamwork. This reaped rewards with replacement nine James Gaffney and winger Diego both crossing the whitewash. The final points of the match were due to a penalty, hard work by the bedians pack leading to Rossendale giving away a penalty right in front of the posts. These points will have to go down in the stats as a team effort because the kickers name is curiously forgotten..... This took Bedians eight points away with less than ten minutes remaining and despite Rossendale fighting till the end they could not find a way through the blue wall.
This was a difficult match in tough conditions, Rossendale had the stronger scrum but Bedians tenacity and organisation won through in the end. Good performances all around the park with centre Andrew Schofield marshalling his opposite number all game, Jim Bloor and James Gaffney combining well in less than ideal conditions for a nine and ten, Jeremy Leahy making his club debut in the less than familiar position of flanker, Campbell doing his customary strong running and offloading game, Lloyd Cawthorne tackling just about everyone on the opposition team, Daniel Davis providing clever work at the breakdown on top of his customary strong tackling game. Finally Diego, in what was not wingers conditions, catching lots of high balls running strong and getting a full body mud bath for his efforts.
Well done team, onwards to the quarter finals of the cup!