Bedford Blues’ British & Irish Cup campaign ended in Wales on Saturday as they lost 15-12 to the Dragons Premiership Select XV.
A disruptive afternoon saw the game being shifted from Bridge Field to the Dragons’ Ystrad Mynach training ground as the pitch had frozen with kick off being delayed to 4.30pm.
A chilly evening saw the youthful Dragons starting well and they went 5-0 up when hooker Ellis Shipp was driven over the whitewash before Arwel Robson extended the lead with a well taken penalty.
Bedford sprung into life and a superb break set up Pat Tapley to cross the line but the extras went begging.
It remained a tight contest but neither side could add points before the interval.
The Blues started the second half brightly and another good team move was rounded off by Dean Adamson with the conversion making it 8-12.
But within three minutes the hosts were ahead once again as flanker James Thomas found a way over the line and Robson chipped over the conversion.
With half an hour remaining many would have bet on further scores, but both teams cancelled one another out and the Dragons dug deep to cling on to the 15-12 victory.
With the cup games complete the Blues return to Championship action on Saturday when they host Doncaster Knights at Goldington Road, looking to avenge a 30-22 defeat in Yorkshire in September.