Bedford Blues 35 Doncaster Knights 7: Disappointment for coach Howells as Bedford give Doncaster the blues

Doncaster returned from second-placed Bedford having lost by four tries to one.

In spite of a good performance at the scrums and lineouts, they failed to match the Blues' physicality which allowed them to turnover Knights ball and make the hard yards through missed first tackles.

Knights director of rugby Lynn Howells said that although he was disappointed with the performance he thought that the final score somewhat flattered the Blues.

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Knights played down the infamous Goldington Road slope but found themselves 10 points down after eight minutes, having been penalised four times.

Blues fly-half Miles Dorian kicked a 40-metre penalty and then scrum-half Darryl Veenendaal broke right, inside the Knights 22, before feeding winger Handre Schmidt for the game's opening try that Dorian converted.

Knights gradually fought their way back into the game and they put Bedford under pressure inside their own 22. After 25 minutes, Knights were awarded a penalty try, converted by fly-half Tristan Roberts, when the Blues could not handle the dominant Doncaster scrum.

With just three minutes to go in the half, Dorian kicked his second penalty to give his side a deserved 13-7 lead at the interval.

Knights finished the half pummelling the Blues pack with a series of close-in scrums but they lost possession and a chance to go in ahead at half-time was missed.

For the first 20 minutes of the second half, the Knights were well in the game, limiting Bedford to a single penalty from the boot of Dorian.

With both sides running the ball at every opportunity, the game was exciting but the Knights made things difficult for themselves by losing possession in key contact situations and allowing the Blues to make ground by either missing first tackles or not putting the ball-carrier to the ground.

After 60 minutes, Bedford extended their lead with a good team try through replacement scrum-half Will Chudley after good inter-passing by backs and forwards.

Dorrian's conversion put the Blues more than two scores ahead and the Knights, who are now in fifth place, had to start taking risks.

With both sides using their substitutes liberally, the game started to break up with the more experienced Bedford replacements having a greater influence on the game.

In the last five minutes, Bedford scored two tries through full-back Brendan Burke and flanker Greg Gillanders, one of which was converted by Dorian.

Bedford Blues: Burke, Schmidt, Bedford, Vass (Sharp 73), Taylor, Dorian, Veenendaal (Chudley 49), Walsh (Ovens 55), Richmond (Locke 82), Seal (Boulton 55), Rae (Tomes 55), Howard (Tupai 60), Gillanders, Goodman, Harding.

Doncaster Knights: Flockhart (Briers 65), Wright, Goss, Gidlow, Williams, Roberts (Lewis-Pratt 49), Hallam (Jones 68), Frazier (Thiede 65), Boden (Lawrie 57), Cusack, Challinor, Parsons, Makaafi (Farivarz 57), Jackson, Cochrane (Walker 65).

Yesterday's match between Nottingham and Rotherham Titans fell foul of the weather.