Old Albanians 19 – Blaydon 18

Blaydon went down narrowly at Old Albanians, contributing greatly to their own downfall by conceding a string of penalties and losing 2 players to the sin-bin in quick succession.

The home side had the early benefit of the wind and therefore lots of possession but excellent Blaydon defence gave then only limited scoring opportunities. They did take the lead however with a well worked effort completed by wing-forward Billy Johnson who strolled in unopposed.
Centre Dan Watt added the conversion but Blaydon were quickly on terms through skipper Keith Laughlin from a catch and drive, Andrew Baggett converting.

Honours were even at the break after Watt and Baggett each landed penalties to make it 10-10 and with their turn to use the elements still to come Blaydon should have been in the ascendancy.

Baggett was on target with another penalty, Laughlin repeated his first half score from close range and at 10-18 an away win was on the cards.

Sadly it all went wrong though a combination of ill-discipline and some dubious decisions. In the 59th minute Prop Robbie Morris was sent to the naughty step to be followed by Craig Willis a minute later.

In their absence Watt was given 2 more penalty opportunities and then with 6 minutes remaining hammered the final nail in the coffin with his 4th success of the game.

John Brennan