Old Albanians 27 – Blaydon 27

[match id=97]

The importance of yellow cards was never better exemplified than in this close encounter, with Blaydon conceding 14 points whilst Gavin Jones was on the naughty step for not rolling away at a ruck.

Blaydon had been leading 13-17 before the turn-around, having taken a 4th minute lead when Andrew Baggett floated a kick to the wing for Tom Jeffery to race 30 metres and send in hooker Fran Entressengle.

Baggett added the extras and then a penalty but home fly-half Lawrence Rayner replied twice to reduce the deficit.

Old Albanians were moving the ball nicely at this point and grabbed a first try through winger Chris May who shot over in the corner and touched down behind the posts to make it an easy conversion.

Blaydon’s forward power regained them the lead before the break when the home side pulled down a scrum that was marching towards their line and a penalty try was awarded.

Unfortunately Jones was off the field for the start of the second period and Old Albanians took full advantage. May broke blindside from a ruck 30 metres out to race in for his second score and centre Johannes Lombard crossed from close range with Rayner converting both efforts, and the score had swung to 27-17.

It took Blaydon some time to recover from the set-back but eventually the pack regained control and from a catch and drive lock-forward Chris Wearmouth was driven over, soon to be followed by flanker Harry Bate to level the scores.

The home side pressed hard without ever looking like scoring and it was Blaydon who thought they had won it when they crossed the line again in the closing minutes. The referee blew for the score only to be consulted by his assistant and then reversed the decision so bringing to an end Blaydon’s 6 match winning run.

John Brennan