Blaydon 6 Jersey 12
A late, late try by Mike Le Bourgeois clinched a thrilling
victory for Jersey after the Islanders had struggled for most of
the game to put points on the board.
The result continued a series of close scorelines for away games
this season: losses by 2 points (Fylde) and 3 (Cinderford); and
wins by 1 (Stourbridge), 4 (Blackheath) and now 6 (Blaydon). Even
the 24-9 success at Rosslyn Park was embellished with a converted
try in the last play of the game.
The late try atoned for a bad day in the kicking department for 'Le
Booj' who missed a straightforward penalty early in the game,
followed by the conversion to Steve O'Brien's try midway through
the first half. This was one of several first half chances for the
visitors, but the only one to result in points.
Gavin Painter put the home side in front with two penalties,
and Blaydon's prospects were further enhanced when Ashley Maggs was
shown a yellow card for a dangerous tackle that some referees may
have considered warranted more serious punishment.
Maggs, who along with Chris Levesley were chosen on Jersey's wing,
ahead of Ed Dawson, was still off the field early in the second
half when he was joined in the sin-bin by captain Graham Bell for
another dangerous tackle. Ross Broadfoot replaced Guy Thompson as
Ben Harvey attempted to match Blaydon in the three-quarters while
short of the full complement of players.
Blaydon were the dominant side in the second period but this time
it was the home team who failed to take their chances, and Jersey
hung to the one-point deficit until they were restored to full
It was a question of which team would take a chance to register a
winning score, and it was the side who'd been on the back foot for
most of the second period - Jersey, with Le Bourgeois bursting
clear following a loose kick to score close to the posts.
Broadfoot's conversion meant a six-point cushion, obliging Blaydon
to score a converted try in added time to win. There were a few
nervous moments for the visitors, but a crucial tackle by Broadfoot
ended the Tynesiders final attack and the final whistle blew,
disappointing the vast majority of a crowd of 410.
The big news elsewhere was unbeaten leaders Ealing losing 22-20 to
their bogey team Barking, who matched them three- three on tries -
one of the scores by Andrew Henderson - and registered a narrow
success. Ealing have apparently never won at Barking, although they
are still well clear on 43 points.
The table is more congested from 2nd spot, held by Fylde (36
points) after a 39-24 win at Macclesfield. Cambridge also have 36
points after beating Blackheath 42-27, while Coventry are fourth
(34 points) after holding off a late Rosslyn Park fightback to win
30-29. Then it's Blackheath (31), Rosslyn Park (30) and Tynedale
(29), who leap-frogged Jersey thanks to an eight-try drubbing of
Birmingham Bees. Macclesfield in eighth also have 29 points, while
Jersey are ninth with 28.
In the other matches Stourbridge needed a last-minute penalty try
to beat Wharfedale 23-20 and Sedgley Park held off a determined
Cinderford effort to win 21-17. The rest of the table beneath
10th - Sedgley - 23
11th - Blaydon - 21
12th - Barking - 20
13th - Cinderford - 16
14th - Stourbridge - 15
15th - Wharfedale - 14
16th - Bees - 12
Next week Jersey host Barking at St Peter (3pm start), and if we
didn't know not to take any team in SSE National One lightly, then
today's results provided a timely reminder.
Why not get yourself a Hot Pot (Curry or Chilli served with rice) in the supporters marquee £8 per pot.