League campaign ends with four defeats in a row

Middlesbrough 24 Bridlington 5
Middlesbrough 24 Bridlington 5

Bridlington’s first team suffered a fourth successive league defeat as their Yorkshire One campaign ended with a whimper at Middlesbrough.

They were beaten 24-5, which meant they finished a disappointing 11th in the final table.

Director of rugby Rich Girking said: “It always going to be tough because they are not a bad side really. But it wasn’t much of a game.

“It was typical end of season stuffreally, but because we have places up for grabs for the Yorkshire Shield final, I thought we would have shown more commitment.

“We didn’t play well at all and didn’t do ourselves any favours.

“We got another injury in the first five minutes which didn’t help but I still think that if we had played at our best, we could have beaten Middlesbrough.

“They had a good forward pack and we were under the cosh in the scrums and our lineout didn’t work as well as it normally does.

“As a result, we were starved of possession at we were porr at the breakdown too. We didn’t ruck well and got turned over a lot of times.

“Of the four tries we concededthree of them were shocking defensively.

“After we got our only try, I thought we had the chance of a fightback but from the kick off they ran through about seven players and put it down under the posts. I couldn’t believe what I was seeing.
“Some of our one-on-one tackling was pretty abysmal.

“The game petered out in the second half and in the last 20 minutes we were just waiting for the final whistle so we could get into the bar.

“However, I’m pretty sure there were plenty of games like that up and down the country last weekend.”

Middlesbrough, who won at Bridlington on the opening day of the season, opened the scoring midway through the first half with a try from replacement number eight Matty John, which Jack Bircham converted.

Matthew Todd increased their lead with a try 10 minutes into the second half but Gary Stevens brought the scores back to 12-5 when he touched down.

Winger Rhys Kilbride added two more tries late in the game, the second of which was converted by Todd, as the hosts cemented fourth place.

The result means Bridlington finished with only three teams below them in the final standings, having had their sights on a top half finish just over a month ago.

However, the men from Dukes Park were only seven points behind Old Brodleians in sixth as Yorkshire One proved to be as close as ever.

Girking said: “About a month ago, we said we needed to win a couple of games before the last four games, because we knew they were all difficult matches.

“We faced three of the top four, although we probably should have beaten Malton and Norton at home, and it proves that this is a very tough division.

“Anyone who comes into this league will find that out. There is always a group of teams in the middle and you need to be consistent to break into the top three.

“Our consistency hasn’t been good enough.”

Bridlington now turn their attention to the Yorkshire Shield final on May 10, when they will face Yorkshire Two’s unbeaten champions Bradford Salem or Yarnbury.

“We had a good chat at Middlesbrough after the game. All the lads realised it wasn’t good enough as a performance.

“We are going to train hard for the next three weeks and get into the right frame of mind for the final.

“I still have no idea what team I will pick. We have got a number of permutations, so whoever puts the effort in for the next three weeks will force my hand.

“We don’t know a lot about Bradford Salem, they are a bit of an unknown quantity, but they must be a good outfit. We beat Yarnbury at home quite comfortably but lost away.

“It will be great to win the Shield in my final game as coach, and it gives you a chance to play in the National Cup, which can get you to Twickenham.”