Fitness proves crucial as Ionians run in 11 tries

Bridlington v Hull Ionians
Bridlington v Hull Ionians

There was a familiar face in charge as Bridlington RUFC began their pre-season programme of friendlies.

With new head coach Paul Cook on holiday, last year’s boss Rich Girking stepped in to take control as Hull Ionians visited Dukes Park.

The National League One side arrived with a strong squad of 28 players and ran in 11 tries to Bridlington’s four, in a match played over two periods of 20 minutes and a third of 30 minutes.

Girking said: “There was no score in the first 20 minutes and we did well to match them, and even had a try disallowed.

“We defended really well but we were tired in the second 20 minutes and they were able to swap their players for others of equal of better quality.

“They blew us apart with four tries in about 10 minutes, although we managed to get two of our own.

“Ten minutes into the final period, we were only six tries to four behind but in the last 20 minutes we were shattered and they added five more tries.

“But considering they play four leagues higher than us, I was really, really pleased with what we did. The lads really stuck to it.

“Ionians had some very big, strong fit lads in the forwards and some very quick backs.

“Our commitment was there, even when we were getting a beating. We knew where we wanted to be but we couldn’t get there because our lungs were about to explode.

“But if we play like we did in the opening 20 minutes, we will blow Yorkshire One sides off the park.

“It showed that we are up to speed and I was quite happy with our fitness and the squad we have.”