Adamson joins hundred club as Blues take first leg lead in Nottingham

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Image: Claire Jones/Bedford Blues

Bedford Blues have taken a comfortable lead in the opening round of their Championship Cup campaign with a professional performance in the first leg at Lady Bay in Nottingham this evening.

Playing under floodlights, Mike Rayer’s side finished their league season in fifth place and with a favourable draw in the Cup; many will hope they can go deep in the season-ending competition.

Cup games can be full of drama, but Bedford Blues took their chances well and benefited from some ill-discipline from the hosts as they take a 24-point advantage back to Goldington Road.

It was Nottingham who opened the scoring after five minutes; James Peachey diving over before Morgan Bunting added the extras to give the hosts a 7-0 lead.

Ten minutes later, Bedford were level courtesy of stand in captain, Joe Atkinson who rolled off the back of a powerful Blues maul; Louis Grimoldby kicking off a solid evening with the conversion.

The first half turned into an attritional affair, although Tui Uru was especially proactive in gaining territory as Bedford showed their usual flair to try and find a way past a stubborn Nottingham defence.

Louis Grimoldby’s penalty on the stroke of half-time looked to be giving Bedford a slim half-time lead, but there was still time for him to add a second kick before a Dean Adamson try opened up a favourable lead.

Adamson didn’t need a second invitation to finish off a patient Bedford move and score his 99th try in Blues colours to send his side in to the shed with an 18-7 half-time lead.

Nottingham sin bins spell disaster

The second half began how the first had ended; Dean Adamson stopped five metres short of the hundred club before Nottingham’s evening began to unravel.

Emeka Ilione was shown a yellow card five minutes into the second half and with Bedford already in control, the evening became a game of attack versus defence as the Blues went in search of the try line.

Two further Grimoldby penalties were the only Bedford scores before Nottingham were restored to fifteen and to their credit, the Archers were the next try scorers as Jack Stapley reduced the deficit to 24-14.

A second yellow card for the hosts, this time for debutant Dan Richardson, would be a step too far for Nottingham however as Bedford were awarded a penalty try.

With the clock approaching the red, there was still time for a momentous occasion; Dean Adamson scoring his 100th try for Bedford Blues in the final play to seal a comprehensive 38-14 win.

Adamson, who has now scored nine tries against Nottingham this season alone, is the 11th man to reach 100 tries in the history of Bedford Blues.

The second leg is in two week’s time at Goldington Road on Saturday 23rd April and it will take a minor miracle for Nottingham to fight back and steal a famous cup victory.

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