ALL GOLDS COME OUT ON TOP IN TRY FEST
BEDFORD TIGERS 26 – 38 BRISTOL ALL GOLDS
Christopher Wilson at Bedford Athletic RFC
The Bristol All Golds survived a determined comeback by the Bedford Tigers to secure an eight tries to three win, their second victory of the season.
Having conceded a soft try early in the game, the All Golds powered back with some classic attacking rugby league. Jack Uren went over before four tries in ten explosive minutes eased them out to a 28-6 half time lead.
The second period began with Bedford scoring after barely 40 seconds’ play and they added two more scores to cut the deficit to 22-28. However, Mike Holden went over for his second try of the game and Brandon Lamb added another to ease the All Golds’ anxiety.
Bailey Thomas completed a hat-trick with five minutes left but it was not enough, and the Bristolians held on for their second win of the season.
The Bristol All Golds completed their opening road trip of four away games with a deserved win over Bedford Tigers in a see-saw game that produced 13 tries and rich entertainment for a crowd basking in the late Spring sunshine.
After conceding an early try, a purple patch of five tries in the second quarter of the game took the All Golds to a 28-6 halftime lead.
Ten minutes into the second period, things had turned on their head and the All Golds’ advantage had been cut to 28-22 but a positive response that earned the All Golds two further tries eased them out to a 16-point lead that a late home score could not overhaul.
The Tigers were looking for their first win of the season and took control of the early minutes putting the All Golds under pressure. That pressure paid off after four minutes with a try from fullback Josh Spearing who went on to collect a hat-trick.
But the All Golds soon hit back, their forwards starting to make ground through the middle as the Tigers defence lost its bite and it wasn’t long before points began to flow.
Brandon Lamb had a try disallowed before Jack Uren showed great strength to force his way over for an unconverted try.
Five minutes later, the Tigers went close to extending their lead but knocked the ball dead. From the 20-metre restart Owen Priest squeezed through a gap to race half the length of the pitch to score and give the visitors the lead.
On the Bristolians’ next set, strong carries from Mike Harrison and Russ Preston got the side into field position and Henry Symons went over out wide.
With 25 minutes on the watch, the All Golds increased their lead. After a Tigers attack was snuffed out on the last tackle, Darrion Ball broke through and dummied his way through the defence and over the line by the posts for a sensational individual try. Priest added the goal.
Again, the All Golds went back-to-back, their next set ending with Uren beating tackler after tackler to score and extend the lead to 22-6.
Five minutes before the break, the Bristolians grabbed a bizarre try when Greg Hamilton’s low kick to the in-goal seemed to be covered by the defence but the ball was fumbled into Mike Holden’s hands for the easiest try he’ll ever score.
Priest’s goal made the interval score 28-6 and the All Golds were looking forward to a big win.
However, momentum can be a huge influence on matches and the momentum the Bristolians had was cut short by the interval and the Tigers picked up the baton with gusto.
With barely 40 seconds on the watch at the start of the second half, Ben Radnor had dodged and weaved his way fully 60 metres to the home line for a magnificent try. Spearing added the goal and four minutes later, posted a try, dummying his way into a massive hole in the All Golds’ defence for the score.
Thomas then chipped over the top and won the race to the ball to score his second and though the extras were missed, the game was right back in the balance with the home side trailing just 22-28.
However, the All Golds manged to put a brake on the home side’s charge and Darrion Ball made a good break, though it came to nothing.
But when Radnor was controversially dragged into touch, the All Golds struck.
Greg Hamilton’s wide pass gave Mason Ball room to race away up the wing and though he was stopped short, the defence was shattered enough to allow Holden to score from dummy half.
Again, the visitors made the most of their set after scoring as a well-placed bomb was fumbled by Radnor and from the repeat set, Lamb went over from close range for a try goaled by Priest.
The home side, though, had the last word with time running out, Thomas beating several defenders to score by the posts, though Spearing’s conversion came back off a post.
Both sides had chances to score in the final seconds. For the visitors, Rohan Chatterjee was ruled offside from Holden’s kick to the corner while an error from the home side ended their last chance of points and the match.
TIGERS: Bailey Thomas; Sean Phimister, Ben Radnor, Ben Summers, Josh Hudson-Lett; Will Brenan, Josh Spearing; Chris Rees-Lloyd, Jack Webb, Callum Moon; Reon Gilbert-Joseph, Matthew Neild; James Little; INTERCHANGE: Jordan Marshall, Charlie Palmer, Rory Town, Connor O’Brien.
Tries: Thomas (4, 48, 76), Radnor (41), Spearing (45)
Goals: Spearing 3 from 5.
ALL GOLDS: Darrion Ball; Rohan Chatterjee, Mason Ball, Henry Symons, Adam Turner; Greg Hamilton, Jack Uren; George Murray, Owen Priest, Ross Rochelle; Louis Birch, Brandon Lamb (Capt); Mike Harrison; INTERCHANGE: Mike Holden, Russ Preston, Jay Woodley, Luke Bowyer.
Tries: Uren (11, 26), Priest (16), Symons (19), D. Ball (24), Holden (36, 57), Lamb (60)
Goals: Priest 3 from 7, D. Ball 0 from 1.
All Golds player of the Match: Full back Darrion Ball was a danger every time he had the ball in his hands and caused the home defence any number of problems. His kicking game pinned the Tigers down and he scored a sensational try during his side’s first half purple patch.
Scoring sequence: 6-0, 6-4, 6-8, 6-12, 6-18, 6-22, 6-28, (HT), 12-28, 18-28, 22-28, 22-32, 22-38, 26-38, (FT)
Penalty Count: 12-2
Referee: Peter Hamer
Image: All Golds man of the match Darrion B