London Scottish v Bedford Blues

Saturday, 16 February, 2019 - 15:00
1st XV Championship
Won 17-35

Bedford Blues ran in five tries as they romped to a 17-35 win over London Scottish at Richmond Athletic Ground on Saturday afternoon.

Bedford were clinical in their finishing as Ryan Hutler, Rich Lane, Huw Worthington, Matt Worley and Dean Adamson all crossed the whitewash during an impressive display in the Capital.

Two early penalties gave the Blues a great attacking platform and despite a lineout drive not kicking into gear, Lee Dickson saw men outside and spread the ball wide for Ryan Hutler to dot down for an unconverted score.

The Exiles took the early blow well and started putting some good phases together but the Blues defence soaked up the pressure well with Oli Curry, Huw Worthington and Will Carrick-Smith making good tackles to stifle any attacks.

The Blues defensive efforts paid dividends in the 15th minute when a strong breakdown saw a penalty go our way before the resulting lineout drive was illegally stopped giving Lewis Robling a simple kick to make it 0-8.

Things turned around quickly though when the Blues bore the brunt of the referees whistle as three penalties in a row gave London Scottish an attacking lineout, but Bedford’s defence was up quick although they knocked on in the tackle. Another penalty followed at the scrum and Rory Jennings took on the kick but his effort hit the post and the ball bounced back into the hands of the hosts. Robert Beattie made a great break before the ball came to Matt Eliet who scored and Jennings converted to make it 7-8.

Bedford regrouped quickly and went through several phases of play before Scottish conceded a penalty which was dispatched with ease by Jake Sharp - who'd replaced Lewis Robling who took a bump to the head - to put some daylight on the score board.

Things then got better for the Blues with a fantastic second try in the 32nd minute. Having soaked up more pressure, a poor offload saw Bedford gather in the ball and break with Dean Adamson and Rich Lane combining with the fullback passing to Will Hooley who grubbered perfectly for Lane to win the foot race to score and Sharp converted.

Bedford then ran in a third try with three minutes left on the first half clock. A mistake at the lineout from the hosts saw Bedford break away with Alex Penny coming close before Huw Worthington powered his way over for the unconverted score to make it 7-23 which is how it stayed until the break.

The second half started with as much pace as the first but both sides managed to snub one another out with a couple of silly errors - a forward pass to Scottish, a pass to touch from the Blues.

The Exiles almost broke the second half deadlock five minutes in when Bobby Beattie managed to evade the Blues defence, but fell about a foot short of the try line with the ball bobbling from his grasp.

Moments later, Scottish were down to 14 when Beattie was carded when an attempted pass from Sharp was purposely slapped down by the winger who trudged off the pitch.

Things were soon even though when the hosts pinched the lineout ball before Sean McCarthy was carded for an infringement at the breakdown.

Both defences were in full force and not backing an inch. Matt Worley, Jarad Williams and Mark Flanagan were immense while Penny and Jacob Fields were on hand to crash over the gain line when needed.

Tempers started to flare midway through the half when Bedford were awarded a penalty at a scrum, but it was soon dealt with and Bedford fired the ball to the opposition 22. The lineout was secured and another attack was built but the Blues knocked on at the vital moment and Scottish were able to clear.

The second half deadlock was finally broken in the 63rd minute and somewhat against the run of play. The Exiles had made good ground before Sharp leapt like a salmon to pluck off a Jennings pass before offloading to Dean Adamson who ran in the score with Sharp adding the extras.

An unnecessary barge by Scottish second row Theo Vukasinovic on Sharp after the try was scored resulted in the referee awarding the Blues a penalty from the restart which was fired into the Exiles 22 but the home side pinched the lineout and made good yards before a high tackle gave them a penalty which was fired to touch.

Feeling aggrieved seemed to revitalise the hosts who had a fire in their belly and were running some good lines. Another penalty went their way and it was pinged deep into the Blues 22 giving the pack the chance to drive over the line but Bedford stopped them illegally. Rory Brand spotted the gap and went quick to score the unconverted try and reduce the deficit to 18 points.

The Blues bench had made a good impact as the half wore on as Tadgh McElroy, Toby Trinder and Ben Cooper strengthened up the front row while Josh Buggea and Paddy Ryan added some extra grunt and it was from a scrum that Bedford scored a fifth try. The ball came down the line to Matt Worley who darted in for an unconverted score making it 12-35.

But back came the Exiles with a try out of nothing as Miles Mantella managed to break through two tackles to score an unconverted effort.

The hosts pushed for a fourth try right up until the final minute, but the Blues were proving to be extremely stubborn in defence. A good Scottish kick pegged the Blues back, but the lineout was delivered and the Blues won a scrum before seeing out the game.

London Scottish: 15. Charlie Ingall, 14. Bobby Beattie, 13. Tom Fowlie, 12. Richie Vernon, 11. Jack Wilson, 10. Rory Jennings, 9. Grayson Hart; 1. Jonny Harris, 2. Billy Harding, 3. Jimmy Litchfield, 4. Theo Vukasinovic, 5. Luke Frost, 6. James Tyas, 7. Lewis Wynne, 8. Matt Eliet.

Replacements: 16. Jared Saunders, 17. Jordan Brodley, 18. Phil Cringle, 19. Mark Bright, 20. Rory Brand, 21. Henari Veratau, 22. Miles Mantella.

Bedford Blues: 15. Rich Lane, 14. Ryan Hutler, 13. Matt Worley, 12. Lewis Robling, 11. Dean Adamson, 10. Will Hooley, 9. Lee Dickson (c); 1. Sean McCarthy, 2. Jacob Fields, 3. Alex Penny, 4. Will Carrick-Smith, 5. Mark Flanagan, 6. Oli Curry, 7. Huw Worthington, 8. Jarad Williams

Replacements: 16. Tadgh McElroy, 17. Toby Trinder, 18. Ben Cooper, 19. Paddy Ryan, 20. Josh Buggea, 21. James Lennon, 22. Jake Sharp

Attendance: 1438

Next Home Match

Saturday 21st September
1st XV Cup
Goldington Road



See more pictures courtesy of Nigel Rudgard at