After what seemed an eternity, Saints finally emerged into the daylight of the new season, with a friendly against
Saints 2nds sorry, Bedford Blues at Goldington Road on Friday evening. As with all such events, it is difficult for the “supporter in the stands” to appreciate exactly what was achieved, but it turned to be, with a rambunctious set of ex-Saints and a number of dual-registered current Academy players in the opposition, a game against a team with a lot to prove (and an understanding of all the current moves thanks to coach sharing!).
It was a faltering start with the Saint’s lineout stuttering. We have some concerning injuries at hooker, and Mikey Hayward was seen warming up by practising his throwing technique! Although Bedford is a league below us, the Saints had an arm wrestle on their heads with so many colleagues and ex-Saints players in the Bedford side. Both Young reams had much to prove. In a harum-scarum 1st half, Bedford opened the scoring through an intercept try by Dean Adamson, but Saints replied with 3 from Rory Hutchinson Tom Litchfield (just wow for this player who spent most of last season at Bedford) and Alex Mitchell. Josh Gillespie opened the account in the second half, with James Grayson at 10. Alex Day (remember him?, and Dean Adamson kept the Blues in touch.
But tries from Tom Collins – a blistering early bid for try of the season, with a 60 yard opening of the throttle to leave Blues defence in tatters, and Fraser Dingwall off a sublime Grayson pass, made sure that Saints left the victors by 19 Points
So what did this supporter take from the encounter?
- We have signed a worthy replacement for Picamole at no 8. Juaro Augustus will be awesome when he gets his feet under the table (or the pack) – immense 8 skills with a pace and ability to find the line.
- We have a number of raw but talented signings from the Academy
- Our new Captain Ludders is the bee’s knees in the role.
A special mention for Saints TV who provided a great video feed, and the find of the season – Sam Roberts on the mike – witty, knowledgeable about the game and kept the evening’s Youtube feed flowing. Thanks Ben, come back again!
Pictures Courtesy James Fitchew