“London called, Durham answered.”
As it said on the BUCS twitter page, we came to play. Last Friday was the start of the new BUCS Super Rugby season for us and we were desperate to come away with a win. After getting a reputation as the ‘nearly-men’, we spent a lot of time in preseason on maintaining possession and finishing opportunities. We just needed to make sure we would show that progression on the field. The game at Rosslyn Park was the perfect setting to showcase what we’re all about. Having a very strong crowd behind us and with perfect conditions we managed to play a brilliant game.
The game started off well with Myles Rawstron-Rudd putting in a big shot in midfield and Fitz Harding lighting-quick over the ball resulting in a penalty for us. Followed by a long ranged penalty that Tom Catterick slotted easily. These first few minutes characterised the start of the half, because we were clearly dominating being 17-0 up after 20 minutes. Two outstanding tries scored by Myles and Paddy McDuell due to too much pressure on Bath. After some discipline errors from us Bath got the upper hand at the end of the half using their big forwards to punch some holes in our defence. Using driving mauls and many phases of pick-and-go’s Bath managed to score one under the sticks and one from a driving maul. Paddy McDuell scored for us once again using his footwork to break the line. But Bath were hungry for more and really threatened to score again. However, our defence stuck together and we managed to hold them out with a held up try, leaving the half at the 44thminute being 22-14 up.
The second half was more about the physicality than it was about the running rugby. Both teams were matching each other on the big hits and dominant carries and it seemed to be a bit slow. Everyone was getting tired from the physical game, but luckily we had a strong bench who managed to raise the intensity and brought the boys back up. One more score after a strong, fast run from Ben Stevenson and a cheeky blindside break from Matt Welsh left us sitting quite comfortable. But the game wasn’t over yet. Two yellow cards saw us with 13 men on the field and only six points up for the last minutes. But we defended with big hearts, managed to keep Bath out and we won the game 30-24.