Spartans put to the sword
Five tries for Sam Williams and four for Tom Wrigglesworth in his last game.
Old Bedians 2nd XV went into Saturday’s fixture unbeaten in 2018 and determined to keep up the winning record. However, the manner in which the victory against Broughton Park was recorded warned Bedes that they needed to be at their best against the Spartans.
Stand-in skipper Michael Gallagher delivered a trademark inspiring pre-match speech with the key point about enjoyment and it was clear the lads took it to heart.
Early pressure put on the Village Spartans forced a mistake out on the wing to put Sam Williams in for his first of five tries that day. This one coming from a dropped ball in the Spartans backline and a clever kick and chase to score out on the right hand side, leaving Gallagher with a difficult conversion and keeping the score at 5-0.
Despite the torrid conditions Old Bedians played with ball in hand and worked another brace of tries in from Sam Williams, Tom Slinger, Vince Betty and Tom Wrigglesworth again in the same corner leaving difficult conversions for Gallagher who had misplaced his lucky kicking tee leaving the score at 27-5 notching over one of the five corner tries.
The second half began and Old Bedians began to exert even more pressure with well worked tries from Vince Betty, Andrew Schofield, Joe Powell, Harri Riddick and Ger Dempsey. Tom Slinger who had been a thorn in the Spartans side with his jinxing runs took over kicking duty and kept the two points ticking over.
Special mention goes to Tom Wrigglesworth in his last game for the club finished just as he started… scoring four tries with some strong tackling and marauding runs including an outrageous dummy on the two Spartan centres to score under the posts, much to the relief of Gallagher who notched up the conversion.
Try of the day goes to Andrew Schofield who powered over the line via a Spartans centre after some powerful runs by the Bedians pack and a slick back move leaving Schofield with a three on one after a 12 phase passage of play. Schofield took the hard option and ran full pelt at the stranded defender bouncing the player and ball over the line.
The scoreline didn’t reflect the effort and work rate put in by the Spartans who didn’t let their heads drop all game and put in some huge hits. Their efforts were rewarded with a try in the first half.
The last kick of the game was settled by another departing player Gearoid Cashman who like Tom is moving to London for sunnier climates. The Irish second row has been a great servant to the club over the last three years and was instrumental in winning the league with the 2nd XV last season.
In a strong performance he selflessly put fellow second rower Harri Riddick through for a try in the second half having beaten three players. His kindness was rewarded by captain Gallagher who allowed him to take the final conversion of the day which he duly converted leaving his club record from the boot one in one.
We wish Tom & Gearoid all the best in the big smoke, once a Bedian, always a Bedian.