Blaydon 3 Richmond 10

Just 7 days after suffering a monumental defeat at the hands of the 3rd placed team Blaydon were up against it again when they hosted league leaders Richmond in a game dominated by the wind.

They had the first half advantage but muffed their only two chances, ignoring a 3 man overlap in a rare attack and then losing possession at a penalty line-out. A fine rear-guard action against the elements however earned them a deserved losing bonus point.
Director of rugby Micky Ward was fulsome in his praise for the much improved performance, particularly the second half defensive work, but summed it up succinctly saying ” We didn’t capitalise on our chances when we had the wind and then gave away too many stupid penalties”.
Their only points came from the boot of fly-half Andrew Baggett who put over the penalty when Richmond strayed offside after Chris Wearmouth had barnstormed his way into the 22.
The lead was short lived however as the visitors with 3 penalties in quick succession worked their way up-field via the touchline and from the 3rd line-out drove over the Blaydon line for a Jack Allcock try.
And that was it for the first half with neither side making any real progress and Blaydon failing to regain the lead before the turn-around into the ever increasing wind.
The second period had lasted only 2 minutes when Blaydon made it even harder for themselves when skipper Keith Laughlin was shown a yellow card, and when he returned from 10 minutes on the naughty step his forward colleague Chris Wearmouth immediately took his place for another10.
Without this double penalty it might just have been a different outcome for the high-flying visitors were no more dangerous with the gale behind them than had been Blaydon.
They did however grab a second try when Blaydon were still a man down, taking a quick tap penalty for their centre Ronnie McLean-Dent to make a determined charge to the line.

John Brennan