Blaydon 19 Coventry 25


Had Blaydon hung onto their possession on the few scoring opportunities that came their way, and had they played throughout with the same spirit they showed in the final minutes then they might have been looking at a different result.
As it was they never really recovered from the shock of conceding a try from the kick-off when they allowed the ball to bounce into the grateful hands of the opposition, and Darrell Dyer was left to stroll over – 7 points adrift after just 15 seconds, it would be hard to imagine a worst start.
By the break it was 6-17 with Brett Connon landing a couple of penalties and Coventry securing a 2nd score when Blaydon kicked away possession to visiting centre Rob Knox who exchanged passes with Heath Stevens to send in flanker Tom Jubb.
The second period saw a better start for Blaydon when Connon landed a 3rd penalty but Coventry, with vociferous support behind them, gained good turn-over ball and ran positively from defence to find a gap and send in Jubb for his second.
Blaydon struggled to find space, even when the visitors incurred a yellow card, but at last on 63 minutes they pulled back a try with Frazer Wilson the catalyst. The winger stormed out of defence with some purpose and took it forward for play to be switched to the right where the dangerous Dan Marshall was waiting to launch himself into action and over by the flag.
Into the final 5 minutes with the score at 14-25 and seemingly very little chance of gaining anything from the game. But they worked their way into the 22 to earn a penalty which they kicked to the corner and then laid siege to the visitors line. A very well organised Coventry defended tooth and nail to keep them out but infringed again and another line-out drive resulted.
Blaydon battered away at the line, Coventry once more stood firm and eventually Connon let it out for a raid down the other side. Predictably the visitors infringed and this time replacement hooker Cameron Bell was driven over and the consolation point secured.
If only it had been like this earlier.

John Brennan