Biggleswade reach Beds Cup final25th February 2018
Bedfordshire Cup Semi-Final
Biggleswade 22 Leighton Buzzard 0
Biggleswade really upset the apple cart beating Midlands 1 side Leighton Buzzard 22-0 in the semi-final of the Bedfordshire Cup
Not since 1991 has Biggleswade beaten Leighton Buzzard in a cup match. But on Saturday they made history downing a side two leagues above them. Biggleswade knew that they had a tough challenge on their hands but rose to the occasion with passion and fervor.
Given the advantage of the fresh south easterly breeze in the first half they ran in three tries and were worthy winners. The Buzzards fielded a prop that was even greater in girth than Biggleswade’s Andy Burke. But his technique was poor and he was given a torrid time by Dom Nott at loose-head.
As the scrum went back and round at an alarming rate for the Buzzards the cry from the touchline was “you’re making him dizzy!”
The Biggleswade pack was on top in the scrums. This was shown later in the match that when given the option of a scrum or lineout again for a crooked throw Buzzards choose the lineout
Biggleswade’s first try came as the visitors under pressure tried to kick their way out of trouble. The ball met the solid frame of Dom Nott who hacked on and raced thirty metres for the touchdown.
The wind was a huge benefit although Biggleswade had to be told by their coach Shane Manning on the bench to use it to get down to the end where scores were more likely. Fly-Half Luke Haverly responded sending the ball deep into the Buzzard’s half.
The number ten stretched Biggleswade’s lead with a penalty and then Biggleswade added their second try. Crisp handling by the three-quarter line put the winger away with a clear run in.
It was an ex-winger who scored Biggleswade’s third try. A strong break by Gavin Taylor playing in the centre created a gap. He was supported by flanker Gareth Rutt on his shoulder that ran in the try from the ten metre line.
Twenty two points ahead at half time Biggleswade now had to withstand a sustained onslaught from the Buzzards for the first twenty minutes of the second period. There were some close calls needing desperate defence. But the line held out and that bulldog Michael Hall eventually led the counter attack.
For the rest of the match Biggleswade was in the opposition’s half. As the clock ticked down they had a couple of penalty chances to stretch further away but the wind swept the ball wide of the uprights.
The win puts Biggleswade into the final against Bedford Athletic who beat Luton on a date to be decided. The game will be played at Langford Road as Biggleswade finished lower in the league structure last season.
Team: Dom Nott, Sacha Heath (Shane Manning), Jimmy Caulfield (Andy Burke), Shaun Munday (Aaron Pickering), Paul O’Sullivan, Liam Dunne, Gareth Rutt, Michael Haddow, Zack Pates, Like Haverly, Gavin Taylor, Michael Hall, Alex Borg, Will Roake.
Next week though it is a return to league action with the visit of the basement boys to Langford Road. They are Northampton Men’s Own whom Biggleswade beat 44-15 in the away tie last November. As it will be March 3rd the match will kick off at 3pm.
The following week will be a tougher visit to Putnoe Woods for a league match against the Queens. After an indifferent start to the season the Bedford side is currently in eighth position in the table just below Biggleswade.