Blues Academy strike late to snatch victory against Nottingham

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The Bedford Blues Academy left it late to secure a last-gasp 12-8 victory over Nottingham at Goldington Road.

On a blustery day, the Blues were in the lead for only one second of the game, but it was the final second.

With strong gusting winds making it difficult for both sides to establish any rhythm, neither side could score in the first half.

With the wind getting stronger, Nottingham took the lead straight after half-time, with a charge down leading to a try in the corner.

Blues levelled the scores when centre Noah Jarvis drove through the middle of the Nottingham defence to tie the game at five-all.

Nottingham stretched ahead with a penalty to make it 8-5 with five minutes to go, but Bedford – knowing they were in the last play of the game – kept their cool.

They worked through the phases before prop Ben Thompson scored from close range to take the lead; full-back Liam Shields converted, and the final whistle went with Blues leading 12-8.

Blues Academy director Denis Ormesher said: “The wind made it really difficult for both sides to play. I thought Nottingham were the better side in the first half but our defence held.

“We were pleased with the way our lads approached the second half. Playing up the slope, against a very strong wind, they had to fight hard for territory.

“They played exactly the right type of rugby and were rewarded with the last minute try, and the win. It wasn’t pretty to watch, but sometimes winning ugly is just what is needed.”

Blues: Ben Thompson, Michael Bond, Oliver Pescott-Frost, Kyron Houston, Jacob Moody, Callum Strachan, Reuben Pritchard, Rahat Choudhury (c); Olly Howard, Max McMinn; Ross Taylor, Harry Hutchins, Noah Jarvis, Liam Shields; Max Titchener: Replacements: George Harris, Charlie Robinson, Sam Copeland, Charlie Harvey, Jacob North, James Mellish, Dylan Leney, Tom Jennings.