Author Archives: bruce100

South Leicester 48 Blaydon 34

Blaydon’s prospects of retaining their Division Two North status for next season took a turn for the worse with this losing encounter against South Leicester from which they gained only a try scoring bonus point.
Just after the half-time break they led 22-24 and deep into the second period were only 2 points adrift at 36-34 but ultimately were let down by some indifferent tackling and a failure to cope with 2 outstanding individual performances from the home team.
Rickie Aley the South Leicester fly-half was a commanding presence throughout, constantly driving Blaydon back with mighty clearances, and on the left wing Myles Bean used his tremendous pace to run in 5 tries.
The home side took an early lead with the first of Bean’s efforts and an Aley conversion and then a penalty but from a Blaydon counter-attack hooker Cameron Bell crossed from a line-out drive and Tom Catterick added the extras.
Bean went over twice more but as the interval approached Blaydon scored again when David Kilpatrick stormed into the 22 in typical style and another Catterick conversion made it 22-17 at the interval.
South Leicester lost possession of the re-start kick for Blaydon to ship it out to Dan Marshall who scooted clear from half-way, Catterick converting, and the visitors were in front.
Bean and then Matt Cook the other winger hit back for the home side only to see Harry Borthwick grab Blaydon’s bonus point try in similar style to the earlier Kilpatrick effort.
That completed the Blaydon scoring but in the closing stages Bean was away again and then a hotly disputed penalty try put the issue beyond doubt, leaving the Crow trees side facing a vital last game of the season in 7 days time.
John Brennan

Blaydon 24, Sale 36

When every point is precious in a relegation battle but you are up against the league leaders who have only been beaten twice all season it takes a special performance to come as close to winning as Blaydon did at Kingston Park yesterday.
In what was undoubtedly their best display thus far they led their illustrious opponents 24-12 going into the final quarter, having scored 4 tries in the process. Sadly the tremendous effort took its toll and as tiredness set in Sale regrouped to run-in 24 points unanswered in the final 15 minutes.
It all started in the 19th minute when Sale ran back a clearance only to lose possession on half-way allowing the quick-thinking Dan Marshall to pick up and race clear for a tremendous score.
The lead was short lived however with Blaydon attempting to run it from their own 22 only to knock-on and suffering the inevitable from the resulting scrum when Sale No8 Tom Ailes touched down.
Not deterred however Blaydon were soon back on the front foot and when Harry Borthwick was high tackled they kicked to the corner, moved it back and forth, and when Marshall chipped ahead Nathan Bailey was on hand to dive over.
Joe Whyman converted that effort and on 30 minutes James Cooney shot clear from some slick passing and although stopped short was able to reach over for a 3rd try.
Leading 17-5 at the interval Blaydon missed a gilt edged opportunity to go further ahead when a pass went down with the line inches away and it was the visitors who scored next. A quick tap penalty was moved through the hands for John Blanchard to score in the corner and narrow their deficit to just 5 points.
On a day when Blaydon simply never gave up however they hit back again to run in a bonus point try. Deep in their own 22 they secured possession to release Cooney who stormed up to half-way to release Borthwick who raced on unchallenged to touch down under the posts and Whyman add another conversion.
Having seen another team from their home town vanquished on the same pitch less than 24 hours earlier Sale finally got it together and tries from Dan Birchall, Ailes, and Matt Simpson turned it round to deny Blaydon a moment of glory.
John Brennan

Sheffield Tigers 26, Blaydon 34

Blaydon picked up another vital 5 points when they completed the double over Sheffield Tigers to put some clear water between themselves and the bottom three.

In a highly entertaining encounter they dominated from the start and wrapped up a try scoring bonus point within the half-hour only to see the roles reversed in the second period.
Going into the last 5 minutes they were holding onto a slender 5 points lead but the reliable Tom Catterick who had converted all the tries put over a penalty to seal an important victory.
It was a Catterick penalty that also got the scoreboard moving in the 2nd minute following an offside and heralded a 20 minute spell of Blaydon territory and possession. Flanker Rob Lenderyou grabbed the first try when he completed a move that had started on half-way and was soon followed by skipper Keith Laughlin with an almost identical effort.
Winger James Cooney and Catterick combined to release Dan Marshall for try No3 and make it 0-24 but the home side in what was their first attack pulled back 7 points when they were awarded a penalty try.
Nathan Bailey restored the Blaydon advantage when he finished off a spell of pressure in the home 22 but the Tigers struck again right on the interval with a mazy run and try from Tom Hart, converted by their fly-half Alan Farrell.
Sheffield kicked off in the second period but the Blaydon clearance was charged down by Farrell who had a simple run-in and added the conversion himself, and 7-31 had become 21-31. Worse was to follow for the visitors when prolonged pressure on their line resulted in a Brackley try, but some determined defence maintained a narrow lead until Catterick’s late penalty.

John Brennan

Blaydon 30, Luctonians 0 – Blaydon win at Kingston Park

Blaydon win moves them just above Wharfedale and currently out of the relegation places:

Pictures by Iam Smith:


On paper this was a must win for both sides in their battles to avoid the relegation trap and potentially therefore a close affair. The reality was a comprehensive 5 points win for Blaydon who ran in 6 tries without reply and with a little more composure it could have been a lot more.
In what was their first outing on the artificial surface at Kingston Park it took Blaydon 10 minutes to get the hang of it whilst the visitors pushed them around at scrums and line-outs, but they survived and gradually gained a foothold in the opposition half and there was no looking back.
On 17 minutes skipper Keith Laughlin broke off from a short scrum and when he was held up on the line Matt Charlton was on hand to dive over. Luctonians re-started, the kick was fielded and passed along the home 22 for Dan Marshall to take it on and release Jack Appleton to show a clean pair of heels in a devastating run from half-way for a second score.
Appleton was then involved in the next attack which culminated in a penalty kicked to touch and Matt Thompson crossing from the lie-out maul, before securing the bonus point try himself just before the interval with a trademark skip past his opposite number and an unstoppable burst to the line.
Much of the second half was best forgotten with Luctonians at last gaining some territory but constantly dropping the ball or being penalised in the face of a determined home defence, with Blaydon at times just as indulgent with their possession.
Going into the final quarter it was still 20-0 but once the visitors effort was spent Blaydon got back on the front foot and typically it was a howler of a back pass by a Luctonians defender that led to the fifth try. The ball went down in the 22 and Davidson was quickest to re-act and hack-on to the line where he picked up and put Joe Whyman over for a simple score.
Laughlin, who had been involved in everything, popped up twice in the final minute in what was the best Blaydon handling movement of the game that pressed and pressed again at the visitors until flanker Harry Borthwick finished off in style.

John Brennan

From the Touchline – Saturday 31st March Programme

Welcome to everyone who has made it here today for the first of our last 3 home games of the Season at Newcastle Falcons. Work has commenced with startling speed on our Artificial Grass Pitch and today will be an opportunity for our players to adapt to a surface that we ourselves will have for the start of next season

This is as ever an important game in the League being postponed from 20th January when snow and ice took over, but with relegation looming over both Clubs, it is vital that we play to the best of our ability today. Luctonians will be buoyed by their late victory last week at home to Hinckley

We visited our “northern” colleagues from Herefordshire at the end of September, and although we lost a close game, I was very impressed by their overall hospitality and the warmth of their Club in general. Although they are relatively isolated as a location they have a strong following of supporters and are a fine example of what Rugby clubs should be today. Their supporters, officials and players are very welcome especially having made the long trip on an Easter Saturday.

It was great to see the Falcons attract such a large crowd to their game last week at St James Park and get the win against Northampton. Clearly there are plenty people around the area who want to enjoy rugby and it would be nice to think this may help our own crowd numbers in future.

I hope you all enjoy the holiday break and hopefully a Blaydon win today

Bill Locke

Remaining Blaydon 1st Team, home games to be played at Kingston Park

Below are the dates of our remaining HOME games to be played at Kingston Park, the home of Newcastle Falcons, as they have started the development of Artificial Grass Pitch (AGP)  at Crowtrees, to ensure it’s ready for the 2018/19 season:

  • 31st March – home game, to be played at Kingston Park against Luctonians – Kick off 2pm
  • 14th April – home game, to be played at Kingston Park against Sale FC – Kick Off 2pm
  • 28th April – last game of the season, home game, to be played at Kingston Park against Hinckley – Kick off 3pm

Access to the ground on Saturday is via the East Stand only which is next to the ticket /shop and adjacent to the main car park, the car park will be free on the day.

Entry can be paid at the door on the day, Match Day Entrance Fees (price includes match programmes)

Adult – Non Member £10
Adult – Member £8
Concession £7
Under 16 Free

All persons then go upstairs to the bar area and thus gain access to the stand through the bar. Food will be available to purchase over the bar, which is a cash only Bar.

It’s all set up for what could be, a very exciting run in, get behind the team, come show and voice your support, Pump the Crow!


Thank you

The Executive at Blaydon RFC



Sat. 24th March – 4th Team Shield Semi Final – South Shields Mariners 3, Blaydon Bricks 38

This was always going to be a difficult fixture, both the Bricks & Mariners would have targeted the 4th Team Shield this year, with Mariners strong this season, haven put out 3 teams at times this season. Bricks had played the Mariners twice early in the season and lost both, although first game we had 12 men and had to lend players. Bricks are a late season team, we always struggle getting full squads out before Xmas, the Ryton Xmas games seem to ignite the Bricks and then the numbers start to grow. This was a planned cup match with dates known back last June and the Bricks where they can, ensure availability for the three 4th team Cup games involved.

It would be wrong to single out individuals (with 2 exceptions I’ll come too) in this game, it was a fantastic squad performance with Mariners beaten in the end by a more experienced (they was 15 Vets in the 27 squad and 10 in the starting team) streetwise team, backed by youth in key positions. The ‘Finishers’ who came on took over without a gap in skill or capability and the strength on the bench with fresh legs was a big contributor to the result.

You can bet the guys from both teams would have known Sunday morning they had been in a bruiser, there was physical clashes all over the park and big hits from both sides, it was full on with no quarter given.

As I always tell the team I hate cup matches, people who know me hate them even more, often just avoiding (more than normal) me, Tracy left the country to escape the lead up to the cup match. I get hyper for the week before the game (Sorry guys!!!) and it continues until the final whistle, thankfully the experienced heads in the team keep us on track once the team is on the pitch. The cause, the 4th Team Shield is really the only thing this team focuses on, the league ensures we get games, but we always approach those games with a basis of everybody players, even if just starting to learn the game, it’s more about people taking part, rather than the win. In the cup matches it’s about the win. Also you’re limited to 7 subs and reality is, you don’t want to make too many changes as it can disrupt the team, so you wait for injuries or players to wear themselves out, to force your hand, which means when you have a large squad, lots of people don’t get on. The squad was fantastic, people went on when needed and the rest were there for the ones on the pitch, giving support, taking photos, running on with water & kicking tee and sharing in the victory as they deserve.

The highs and lows:

· Forwards were great going forward, took the ball on well, with a lot of support and offloads going to Bricks hands well
· Our scrum was too strong for the Mariners, they failed to secure a lot of their own ball
· We also took a fair amount of their lineout ball and vast majority of our own.
· Mariners had a very good strong young centre, but his game was straight running and our centres cut him down every time.
· Our backs lines of running caused Mariners real problems, making good yards and always with our backrow there to secure the ball when we were stopped.
· I think the backs were just trying to stress me, (probably deserved, for my loud, lecture in the changing rooms, you know you probably over did it, when you finish, ask your Captain (Paul Winter) if he has anything to add and his response is, you’ve said more than enough…. ) with a couple of attempts to run out of the 22, when a kick would have relieved the pressure.
· Front 5 carried well and our backrow were everywhere, both in attack and defence
· The teams defence was immense, keeping Mariners to a penalty score only.
· There is always a spell in any game where a side comes into their own and for the Mariners, that was about 10 mins into the 2nd half, they were camped in our 22 and having their best spell of the match, but the Blaydon defence, to a man was not breached and they left empty handed and you could see heads drop somewhat, as they lost the opportunity to get back into the game.
· First of the 2 mentions; has to go to Rodders, when you call your full back when he’s late for the meet time and wake him up with less than 40 minutes to kick off, it puts a bit of a spanner in the works….
· 2nd mention goes to Jak Tuck from our U18s, who has played for us in league but stepped up into a cup semi-final against a good Mariner’s scrum half in later stages of the second half and played well, scoring a good try.

So, a good hard fought win, then back to Mariners club house, (a good few short as many went off to the Falcons game at SJP) and great hospitality from the Mariners. The final will be on the 21st April, venue to be determined, against Houghton Boars, so a repeat of last year’s close won final.

Thanks to Derek for the majority of the photos:


· Trys: Liam, Arran 2, Vinnie, Chester, Jak
· Conv Alex 2, Rodders 2

Semi Final winning squad:
· Paul Winter
· Keith Winter
· Tom Hirst
· Phil Partington
· Steve Sewell
· Mark Todd
· Keith Oliver
· Derek Turnbull
· James Knox
· Simon Drennon
· Justin Clarke
· Arran Poad
· Paul Vinnicombe
· Liam Bradley
· Jak Tuck
· Alex Twinn
· Lewis Hill
· Ryan Robson
· Paul Dingley
· Mark Hopewell
· Steven Davidson
· Phil Divers
· Peter Andrew Bath
· Matt Robinson
· Damien Shaw
· Robert Pyle
· David Reay

Blaydon 24 Sedgley Park 52

Both sides had plenty to play for, albeit at opposite ends of the table, and whilst Blaydon gave it their best shot and gained a deserved try bonus point it was the visitors who controlled affairs for much of the game to run out comfortable winners by 8 tries to 4.
Harry Borthwick got Blaydon on the front foot in the 4th minute, his storming run into the 22 producing a try for full-back Nathan Bailey, but the lead was to be short lived.
The Tigers hit back 3 minutes later when, for what was to be the first of many a move, their slick handling found a gap and Callum McShane was left with a simple run-in.
And then came a blitz from the visitors in which they simply seemed unstoppable, running in 3 tries in 4 minutes through Hallam Chapman, Kieran Allen and Andrew Riley, and all scored with the utmost of ease.
To their credit Blaydon heads stayed up and on 31 minutes a rolling maul was heading for the line when Park front rower Ben Black pulled it down for which he received a yellow card. The penalty went back to touch and this time Matt Thompson was driven over, Joe Whyman converting.
With half-time beckoning Bailey put up a high ball to the far corner and after the forwards had taken it on leading scorer Jack Appleton crossed near the flag, Whyman again on target to make it 19-28 at the break.
A deficit reduced to just 9 points had kept Blaydon in the game but it didn’t take long for the visitors to regain their composure and 4 minutes into the second period Riley was over for his second, and then the hat-trick on 49 minutes.
Black crossed for try No7 from a McShane line-out break and near the end replacement Matt Gallagher completed the Sedgley scoring to keep them well in contention for promotion.
For Blaydon it was a disappointing outcome in what was their last game to be played on grass at Crow Trees before the diggers move in to replace it with an artificial surface but centre Dan Marshall had the honour of scoring their final try on turf when he crossed for the bonus point score in the 61st minute.

John Brennan