Battling Brid fall just short in home battle with rivals Alnwick

Bridlington RUFC skipper Jamie Martin tackles Alnwicks full-back who was their man of the match and main threat
Bridlington RUFC skipper Jamie Martin tackles Alnwicks full-back who was their man of the match and main threat

Bridlington were edged out 15-13 on home soil in their North One East clash against Alnwick.

Brid went into this home fixture looking for a win to take them into the top half of a very competitive league.

New signings Luke Thundercliffe, Sizwe Zondo and Marek Jsul started, as did AJ Burrows, his first start for several seasons.

Brid started with the breeze at their backs and the first scrum saw the hosts gain the advantage and cleared to half way.

Jsul and Luke Thundercliffe were quickly into the action and gave Brid the platform to attack for the first 10 minutes.

James Thompson, Dewi Roberts and Jamie Martin all made inroads, but on too many occasions Brid let Alnwick off the hook with errors when tries should have been scored.

Unfortunately Stevie Mellonby missed with a couple of penalties as well.

Alnwick gained strength from this and broke from deep with their impressive full-back.

The visitors then missed a penalty before disaster struck for Brid. Zondo made a break but pulled a hamstring in the process and left the field and minutes later Luke Thundercliffe left the field after a head collision.

This caused disruption in Brid’s backs and before they could re-group Gary Heeley was binned for a high tackle.

Both sides were trying to run the ball but were both guilty of losing ball in contact until Alnwick scrum-half broke from a scrum and was stopped by a dubious high tackle from Chris Young who was sin-binned.

From the line-out Alnwick broke and scored to go into half-time 5-0 up.

Brid needed to keep the ball for longer periods in the second half as when they did Alnwick looked vulnerable, but from a Thompson break again the ball spilled loose and the visitors hacked clear to the home line, where desperate defence from Ollie Shipley saved the day, allowing Dan Robinson to clear

Unfortunately the kick chase was poor and Alnwick’s full-back gathered to gallop 50 metres across the park to score a soft try in the corner, making it 12-0.

Brid responded well and Robinson broke with the powerful Ryan Nepia in support. Brid won a penalty and kicked to the corner, where the line-out was loose, but the impressive Thompson gathered and powered over.

With the kick being missed the score was 12-5.

The next 10 minutes were played in midfield with both sides guilty of mistakes.

From a scrum on halfway Thompson made another break but again lost the ball.

As Alnwick looked dangerous they in-turn gifted Brid the ball back and from a line-out 10 metres out and Nepia scored from a set move.

Again the kick was missed, but Brid were within two points.

Brid were penalised at the kick-off and Alnwick kicked the penalty to make it 15-10 with 10 minutes left.

The hosts threw everything at Alnwick with Roberts making several barnstorming runs, then Jsul and Jamie Martin along with Josh Thundercliffe gave Robinson the chance to make ground, but again Brid lost possession and Alnwick cleared.

With the last play Brid managed to keep the ball well but with Alnwick defence staying strong the hosts, despite pulling it back to 15-13 with a penalty, couldn’t break through againand a knock-on gave Alnwick the win.

Brid’s performance did earn them a losing bonus point.