Blues head to Ealing with Rayer expecting a ‘test’

Mike Rayer

Mike Rayer

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Bedford director of rugby Mike Rayer is expecting a challenging test when his side head to Ealing for a pre-season friendly this weekend.

Going into the clash off the back of a 40-5 victory against National One outfit Old Albanians, Rayer said: “There were some pleasing displays on show there and it’s a good base to work from.

“We’re not going over the top with it but it was a good hit out for us to start with. To get some of the new guys up and running, it was really pleasing.

“It wasn’t an easy game against Old Albanians but it’s like a step up with Ealing because they have a year’s experience in the Championship and they’ve recruited very well over summer.”

London club Ealing came close to beating the drop from the Championship last season and may have just scraped survival had Bedford beaten Jersey on the last day of the previous campaign

Rayer continued: “It’s a test which we’re keen to take on at this stage, we’re looking forward to it and it’s on a 3G pitch so the whole day should be an intriguing one.”

The six tries put past Old Albanians on Friday at Goldington Road got Bedford’s preseason off on the right foot, with the Blues’ set piece play in particular impressing.

However, Rayer admitted improvement in all aspects of their game is the minimum requirement.

He said: “Every facet of our game needs to be better; the set piece is an area of our game that is getting a total revamp.

“There are certain core areas that we’ve been addressing over the summer and we’re continuing to work on.”

With a big shuffle in personnel at the club over the summer, Rayer was pleased with the additions to the squad so far but is still looking to add at scrum half.

He added: “We are looking to take Peter White on at scrum-half, I though he did very well last week.

“We’re still looking at one, maybe two more signings but we’re not rushing into anything and it’s the same with the trialists at this moment.”