Battling Market Rasen & Louth RUFC surrender home lead
SOME unfavourable conditions greeted Market Rasen & Louth RUFC as they succumbed to a 14-21 defeat against visitors Bedford Athletic RUFC.
On the basis of previous encounters, the weather appeared favourable to the home side – they dominated the early exchanges as a Matt Sutton kick opened the scoring.
Despite a fight-back from Bedford, Rasen tripled their lead with two more scores from the trusty boot of Sutton.
The visitors then registered their first points of the afternoon, but it wasn't quite enough to prevent them from trailing 9-3 at the interval.
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Energised by a change in tactics, travelling fly-half James Mortimer began to control the game with some astute kicking.
Mortimer struck two penalties to level the scoring, before a perfectly executed catch and drive allowed number-eight James Ball to pass over the line for Bedford.
Trailing for the first time in the contest, Rasen's task was made immeasurably harder when a late tackle from replacement Chris Mills earned him a yellow card, and 10 minutes in the sin bin.
The visitors took full advantage as scrum-half Tom Orton touched down. Mortimer piled even more pressure on Rasen with a tidy conversion.
In recent weeks the Red and Greens have displayed an impressive level of team spirit, especially when trailing.
Indeed, they rallied again here to force the issue – a clever attack resulted in an opportunity for Jack Noquet, but the Rasen scrum-half was ultimately stopped in his tracks.
A late break from the hosts – with Leigh Dearden registering a try – offered a brief glimmer of hope, but the visitors managed to hold firm and took the win.