St Ives suffer first Rugby League Conference East defeat of the season at Bedford

Rugby League Conference East

Bedford Tigers 42 St Ives Roosters 22

ROOSTERS' winning start to the season came to a halt as they went down 42-22 at long-time rivals Bedford Tigers on Saturday.

It was a game in which injuries played a crucial part for St Ives and things started badly as they lost Tim Lumley Good (hamstring) in the warm-up.

Things were then not helped when Jamie Noble left the field after 15 minutes with a shoulder injury, Christopher Sykes broke his wrist after 30 minutes and Matt Ellwood (leg) was withdrawn in the second half.

The game had opened brightly for Roosters, as they took a 6-0 lead after 10 minutes, with Ashley Eusden scoring in the corner and Matt Dear successfully converting the goal kick from a difficult angle.

Unfortunately Tigers were allowed straight back into the match, crashing over for a converted try straight from the kick-off to level and then extending their lead to 12-6 a couple of minutes later.

But the visitors did eventually settle down, David Sykes crossed from short range, with Dear once again converting, but a penalty under the posts meant Bedford led 14-12 at the break.

Lacking in replacements, Roosters struggled in the second half as Bedford ruthlessly exposed the tiredness in some of the forwards.

Two tries were conceded from defensive mistakes, one of which was converted, to extend the Bedford lead to 24-12.

Following another converted try soon after from the hosts, Roosters lost yet another player to injury, when Max Dominy left the field with a back injury.

To their credit, Ives hit back and new signing Rhod Howcroft smashed his way over the line to reduce the Tigers lead to 30-18, once Dear had taken care of the extras.

However any chance of a revival ended when Bedford wrapped up the game, in somewhat unusual circumstances.

A Bedford player appeared to be tackled in the Roosters half, but the referee decided that the tackle wasn't completed and allowed play to continue - and the hosts exploited the advantage and scored under the posts.

There was still time for stand-in full-back Lewis Hall to cross for an unconverted score for Roosters before Bedford completed their win.

Next up for St Ives is a home game against Norwich Saxons on Saturday at the St Ivo Outdoor Centre, kick-off 2.30pm.