London Scottish suffer defeat 17-24 at the hands of Bedford Blues in first match at home in 2020.
The Scots try scorers were hooker James Malcolm and inside centre Bobby Beattie. Fly-half Will Magie slotted both conversions, with Harry Sheppard kicking a penalty.
Bedford Blues ran in three tries, Richard Lane, Ryan Hutler and Dean Adamson all on the score board. Fly-half Will Hooley converted all tries and slotted a penalty.
It was the Scots who kicked off proceedings through the boot of Magie, the home side playing from left to right in the first half.
Scottish supporters only had to wait eight minutes before the first try was scored, Malcolm going over in the far-left hand corner after the Exiles set up the rolling maul off the back of a line out five metres out. Magie converted; London Scottish 7-0 Bedford Blues.
Less than ten minutes later fellow Glaswegian, Beattie, scored underneath the posts. Off the back of a line out between the Blues’ 22 and 5 metre lines, the Scots set up a rolling maul which brought them to five metres out before referee Simon Harding called advantage, the Blues having made a side entry at the maul. Scrum-half Josh Barton got his hands on the ball and dinked it over the Blues’ defence, Beattie gathered to go over. Magie’s conversion brought the score up to 14-0 with twenty minutes played.
The visitors would go on to dominate the rest of the half. Bedford’s first try came thanks to an interception five metres out from the Scottish try line. Having denied the Blues on several occasions in their own half, the Exiles managed to secure turn over ball thanks to a Bedford knock on five metres out. The ball was secured at the scrum by the Scots, but whilst trying to exit a poor pass landed in the hands of Lane, who darted over the whitewash to score. Hooley converted; London Scottish 14-7 Bedford Blues.
Hutler cut through the Scottish defence from 40 metres out and put on the after burners to go over and score his side’s second try. Hooley’s conversion brough the scores level at half time. London Scottish 14-14 Bedford Blues.
The visitors took the lead for the first time in the evening in the 60th minute when the bounce of the ball fell in favour of Adamson, who gathered to score from 22 metres out. Hooley’s conversion stretched the visitors’ lead to 14-21.
With ten minutes left to play Bedford were penalised for not releasing the ball at a ruck just within their own 22. The Scots pointed to the posts and replacement fly-half Harry Sheppard slotted the penalty, London Scottish 17-21 Bedford Blues.
It was all too little too late though and it was the visitors who had the final say with a Hooley penalty right in in front of the posts five minutes before the full-time whistle. The final score, London Scottish 17-24 Bedford Blues.
The Scots will look to regroup ahead of next weekend’s match away to Coventry.
Man of the match: Luke Hibberd