Derby day delight for Bridlington

Bridlington 22 Scarborough 10
Bridlington 22 Scarborough 10

Bridlington made it third time lucky when they deservedly overcame Scarborough in an entertaining derby at Dukes Park.

Having been beaten by their rivals in the league and Yorkshire Shield earlier in the season, the hosts were eager to take revenge and belied their league position to delight the home fans.

Both sides had injuries to key players, which gave opportunities for younger players to come into the sides.

Scarborough kicked off the match, putting the hosts under pressure from the start, and spent the opening seven or eight minutes deep in Bridlington territory.

When the home side got their hands on the ball, they made ground and a crossfield kick by Muru was gathered by Stevie Mellonby, who found Gary Stevens but he was stopped 10 metres short.

Scarborough were able to escape to halfway, but gave away a penalty, from which Bridlington wee able to mount another attack following a good kick by Muru.

Another penalty five metres out was taken quickly by the forwards, driving at the defence a couple of times before releasing the backs, for Stevens to score a try out by the corner flag, which was excellently converted by Mellonby.

Scarborough were very quick to respond. Playing advantage from a Bridlington knock-on, they were awarded a penalty just outside the home 22, which stand-off Tom Radcliffe kicked successfully.

In the 18th minutes, a long kick ahead by Scarborough scrum half Zybnek Schutz was knocked on by Mellonby as he tried to gather. This gave the visitors an attacking scrum 30 metres from the line, nd from here the forwards secured good ball, and the ball was swept from right to left for centre Benji Cottle to score, converted by Radcliffe.

By this stage, Bridlington had lost Auryn Murray to injury, but he was replaced by the bullish Ntsikayomzi Daka, who gave a man of the match display.

And the hosts responded immediately to going behind. Following a knock on from the restart kick, Mellonby stepped up to kick successfully from just outside the 22, to level the scores.

Bridlington pressurised the Scarborough defence time and again, and from a penalty on halfway, Muru kicked for a lineout on the visitors’ 22.

Daka made a good run, driven on by James Thompson, winning another penalty 10 metres from the line. From a scrum Bridlington drove at the line, and after a couple more drives, Ezra Luxton was able to dive over the line for a converted try.

Bridlington led 17-10 at the break, but either side of half-time saw referee Saunders at the centre of proceedings as he issued four yellow cards.

Scarborough number eight Hoggard departed before half-time, but the home side found themselves down to 13 men for a spell early in the second period when Martin Robinson and Luxton were penalised. Scarborough prop Paul Taylor followed them into the sin-bin.

When things settled down, Scarborough started the half well and should have regained the lead. A great run by full-back Graeme Jeffrey should have ended with a try, but he failed to see winger Joe Lenton outside him on the overlap, and Stevens made a crucial tackle 10 metres from the line.

With just one score in it, and in the heat of the battle of a local derby, an onslaught from Scarborough was expected but it barely materialised. And Bridlington could have given themselves a little more breathing space if Mellonby had been able to land one of three difficult penalty attempts.

In the end, with the clock ticking down, the home team increased their lead with a try out of nothing.

A wayward clearance from outside his 22 from Muru was sailing directly into touch, but scrum half Schutz jumped and knocked the ball into play for Jeffrey, but his tap back went straight to Stevens, who scampered away to touchdown his gift.

Once Mellonby’s conversion attempt had failed, the full-time whistle blew,

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