Crusaders 12 v Blaydon 38

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Saturday, 18th October 2008

Crusaders played host to Blaydon in the Candy League at Warwick Road.  Given the league status of the Blaydon senior XV, generally there is an acceptance that defeat by their second string is the probable outcome, especially given the player base they have to choose from.

Perhaps then, the result was no surprise to anyone.  However, the outcome should be tempered with the thought of how much the Crusaders have improved over the last season.  True, 12 pts to 38 pts is a fairly wide margin but measured against previous results of matches with Blaydon (and for that matter Tynedale too) this was a moral victory for the Crusaders.  The turn round in their fortunes is massive, especially taken into account that the oldest player in the side has yet to breach 23!

True, no tries were scored but young fly half, George Graham, landed four penalties to tighten things up a little.  Given that the Blaydon back line had all played some 1st XV rugby this season, showed how impressive Carlisle were throughout the game defensively; and. had they had more faith in their own ability, tries would certainly have been scored.

George Graham -  landed four penalties

George Graham - landed four penalties

Sport is for recreation and enjoyment, and whilst the object of the game is to win, win at all costs is the last thing we should have to countenance. particularly in what is no more than a ‘merit table’.  Sad therefore, that the majority of the visitors apparently chose to treat the outcome of the game as less than satisfactory, presumably because their ability to ‘thrash’ their opponents had been largely neutered by an improving Carlisle XV.

One of the great enjoyments of our game has always been to be good opponents on the field, then burying the hatchet in the bar over a meal and a few drinks.
No one wants to lose a match, but to win in a less convincing manner than is considered satisfactory, and then ignore the hospitality, is at best churlish.  For that is what happenned at Warwick Road on Saturday when the majority of the Blaydon squad were so disappointed with their ‘under achievement’ that they chose to leave after the match, some without even showering!

Still, that’s life.

Nothwithstanding, a big thank you to those from Blaydon who chose to stay after the game and have a crack in the bar,