Another home win for Bridlington

Bridlington 17 Pontefract 12
Bridlington 17 Pontefract 12

On a cold, bright day with a very strong crosswind, Bridlington first team won by 17-12 against Pontefract.

In a disjointed game of many penalties and set pieces, Bridlington, who had been winning 17-5 with 10 minutes to go, held on to defeat an opposition who played their best rugby of the game in the last quarter.

The first few minutes of the game saw each team failing to put the ball through many pairs of hands and with Bridlington trapped in their own half after the Pontefract kick off.

A high tackle resulted in a penalty to Bridlington which saw them into the opposition half for the first time.

A good run by Roberts and an intelligent off-load from the ground saw Girking go over for a try by the posts, with an easy conversion by Arthur for an early lead of 7-0.

At this point Bridlington were scrummaging well, without turning the ball over, but a Pontefract scrum and quick ball to the left wing after missed tackles in the centre, left an easy Pontefract try in the left corner.

The missed conversion into the wind showed how difficult the conditions were.

The Bridlington restart went straight into touch, and after the resulting scrum Bridlington were judged offside, and were soon trapped again deep in their own half for some time.

Eventually, a good kick and chase took them to the Pontefract 22, with the hint of a Bridlington player being illegally taken out, not seen by the referee.

Good play by Pontefract took them once again close to the Bridlington line where desperate defence prevented a score, and an eventual penalty for another high tackle brought relief in terms of ground gained, but the strong wind curled the ball infield.

Pontefract cleared to the Bridlington half, with another penetrating run by Roberts returning the compliment,

Play continued with Bridlington looking the better side individually but not yet really dominating.

A lineout, a maul, and some further good forward play brought Bridlington deep into Pontefract territory, and after an opposition knock on and home team scrum, good pressure brought the second Bridlington try by Roberts to bring the score to 12-5, with Arthur unsuccessful with the conversion in extremely difficult kicking conditions.

With half time close a Pontefract player was yellow carded, presumably for repeated offences, as no individual offence seemed obvious.

After the Bridlington restart, the pattern of repeated penalties continued, the majority against the opposition, and this went on throughout the second half.

A good attack by Pontefract down the left wing was stopped by Davies, with a try-saving tackle. Several times during the game Pontefract had looked dangerous down this flank.

Pontefract were now playing better and clearly believed that the game wasn’t lost.

They had pinned Bridlington in their own half for long periods of time, not helped by a clearance kick after a lineout that gave the opposition the ball in virtually the same place.

A third great run by Roberts led to a lot of ground gained and a second yellow card for a Pontefract player.

A truly remarkable kick by Arthur, using the wind and putting the ball high across the pitch to land in touch a metre or two inside the left corner flag, was the kick of the game.

A safe lineout and quick ball to Daka who had broken from the line, saw him go over in superb style, to bring the score to 17-5.

The conversion was missed from a difficult position against the wind.

After the restart, Bridlington advanced steadily with solid forward play, a good run by Thompson forced further pressure.

Bridlington had used the catch and drive successfully throughout the game, and had proved their pack’s superiority over the Pontefract eight on numerous occasions.

Pontefract had absorbed a lot of pressure until Kemp was yellow carded.

Bridlington moved out of their own half, and a strong attack and kick forward looked to lead to a certain score but the referee adjudged a knock on.

After the scrum, good Bridlington scrambled defence saw them gaining a good 30 metres, but conceding a penalty.

The kick to Pontefract saw them at the Bridlington 22, smart handling after the lineout led to a move down that dangerous left wing and a try under the posts. The conversion was easy and brought the scores to 17-12.

The final nervous few minutes saw no further scores and the slight difference of opinion and scuffle between the two sides at the end was of no real significance in what had been a game of changing fortunes played sportingly in difficult conditions.