Boss hails best performance of the season

b12-1301 Bedford Blues (in Movember kit) v Cornish Pirates
b12-1301 Bedford Blues (in Movember kit) v Cornish Pirates

Blues director of rugby Mike Rayer hailed his side’s 32-6 win over Cornish Pirates on Friday night as their ‘best performance of the season’, writes Michael Hann.

Bedford were professional throughout and playing up the slope in the first half took a 12-0 lead thanks to four Jake Sharp penalties.

Despite the Pirates scoring two penalties at the start of the second half, Bedford continued to boss the game and touched down two tries through Neil Cochrane and Brendan Burke.

Speaking afterwards Rayer said: “It was a bit attritional with both packs going at it.

“We managed to get points when we needed to and keep that scoreboard going.

“I’m actually really pleased with that performance. In many ways it was our best performance of the season because we’ve had to do it slightly differently to what we’d normally do and that’s credit to the lads. They (Cornish Pirates) are a good side, well drilled and disciplined, so you have got to find other ways to win.”

The Pirates had chances to keep themselves in the contest, but they missed three first half penalties.

Rayer admitted that could have changed the outcome of the game, but commended the way his side saw the contest through.

“It might have been a different game if they kicked their goals and they’re all big turning points,” he continued.

“But it was important that we got that try to give us a bit of breathing space and the maturity was to take the points as they came.

“I thought the forwards and Jake nursed them towards the back end of that game and we have put a bit of icing on the cake with Brendan Burke’s try at the end.”

The Blues’ forwards were particularly impressive throughout the game and Rayer was equally delighted with the way in which they set up Cochrane’s try with a brilliant driving maul.

“That is what forwards practice, they love all that,” he added.

“It’s not pretty on the eye, it’s more for the purists, but it is effective and if it’s going OK then you’ve got to keep doing it.”