Ready to roll - Blues all set for Rumble with Rotheram

Bedford Blues v Saracens at Goldington Road.
Bedford Blues v Saracens at Goldington Road.

Mike Rayer has warned his players to improve their discipline when Bedford Blues welcome Rotherham to Goldington Road on Saturday.

The Bedford director of rugby highlighted the issue as one of the key factors as to why Bedford lost their opening match of the season 19-10 at Nottingham on Friday night.

Rayer said: ‘We accept that last week our discipline let us down. We’ve got to put it right this week because we can’t afford to be giving sides a 13-point leg up, especially in the first half.

“Rotherham’s kicker James McKinney kicked pretty much every goal last week, and we know we can’t afford to lose our discipline.

“A different challenge like Rotherham excites us; we all get down after defeats but you’ve got to dust yourself off and come again. We can’t shy away after losing a match.”

Bedford will be hoping to turn Goldington Road into a fortress. The Blues earned five of their seven victories at home last season and Rayer is hoping for more of the same on Saturday.

“Up until last season Goldington Road has been good to us. Every year we set it out to be a fortress, and that is no different this year,” he said.

“We have spoken about it at length and the proof will be in the pudding on Saturday when we take on a quality opponent in Rotherham. We are desperate to get that first win on the board.”

The Titans managed to finish fourth last year, beating the Blues home and away in the process.

Rayer added: “For me this is a step up in opposition – we’ve watched them quite closely and the signs are there that they will be up there with where they were last year.

“We’ve gone all out this week to improve our performance from last week, which we know wasn’t great. An improvement in performance is definitely needed, and with that hopefully the right result will arise.”

Rayer also confirmed Nathan Earle ruptured his Achilles during Friday’s defeat and requires an operation, thus forcing the winger out for most of the season.