Blaydon 31 – Backheath 38

In one of the most remarkable recoveries seen at the Crow Trees ground Blaydon came back from a 12-38 deficit midway through the second half to be within inches of pulling off what would have been a fantastic victory.

For 20 minutes they took total control in the forwards, pushing Blackheath off their own scrum ball, marching them backwards under the posts causing a yellow card to be issued and 5 times were over the visitors line.

Unfortunately 2 of them were not awarded and in the end Blaydon had to be content with a brace of bonus points – but what an effort!

Against the run of play they had taken the lead from their first foray over half-way in the 14th minute when Craig Willis, in his first game after a long lay-off through injury, crossed in the corner after an excellent break by Tom Bramwell.

The Blackheath backs however were having a field day against a splintered defence, breaking through tackles at will to run in 3 tries in a 6 minute blitz. Mike Canty (2) and Sam Eydmann did the damage and at the break it was 5-24.

Replacement centre Toby Bain pulled one back just after the restart when chasing his own chip over a defender, but when Tom Bason and Dave Allen had crashed over for Blackheath tries number 4 and 5 it looked all over.

But suddenly Blaydon were transformed and pride was fully restored through the efforts of the forwards. Blackheath who had been coasting were now in disarray and had no answer when Matt Hall went over with a head of steam.

Willis was on hand to grab his second and near the end No8 Gavin Jones broke from a scum to level the try scoring at 5 a-piece.

A remarkable finish but it could have even been better.

John Brennan