With Hartpury RFC’s short tenure in the Championship involving close relegation battles over the past three years, this season ended in similar fashion with the Gloucestershire-based side overcoming Bedford 28-26.
After losing the reverse fixture 24-26 back in October last year, through a late Bedford try and a missed penalty kick, there was a sense of justice within the final result.
Since the 32nd minute, Hartpury were narrowly in front and found themselves moments away from a crucial vital point bonus victory.
Despite this, failure to find touch gave the Blues one last opportunity, resulting in them launching a drop at goal that would have snatched the points away from the home side.
— LNC IMAGES (@LNCImages) March 31, 2019
To give home players and fans a break, the attempt flew wide and allowed Hartpury sealed their fourth win in five games to keep their hopes of avoiding the drop back down to National One.
Unlike most of the season, Hartpury’s victory didn’t see their relegation rivals Richmond come away with a victory of their own after they were beaten 17-38 at home to Jersey.
The results from the weekend see Hartpury come off the bottom of the table, although the gap between them and Richmond is just three points, leaving everything to play for over the last few games.
Richmond will travel to Bedford in two weeks’ time, meanwhile Hartpury face the challenging trip to the Madejski Stadium, where the champions of London Irish will be waiting.
Last 2 weeks the @HartpuryRFC boys have got W’s at Jersey away and now Bedford home✅ seriously enjoying my rugby with them🤙🏻🔥
— Charlie Powell (@charlie_powell4) March 31, 2019
London Scottish also fell to defeat on Saturday, leaving the door slightly ajar for Hartpury to overtake them before the end of the season, if results were to go their way. Hartpury also play host to Scottish at the Gillman’s Ground later on in the season, on Saturday April 20.
For the game against Bedford, Hartpury were boosted by the return of scrum-half Ben Vellacott, who missed the Jersey trip and is expected to be joining Wasps at the end of the season.
There was also further talent back on the bench, with the likes of Gloucester Rugby winger, Henry Purdy, making his second Championship appearance for the Red & Blacks.
Hartpury RFC: Wilcox, Foley, Powell, Tovey, Seabrook, Leeming (Cons 32, 42, 50, 72) Vellacott; Murphy, Tanner (Tries 32, 72), Harden, Batley, Linsell, Craig, Qera (Try 50), Graham (Try 42). Bench: Stratford, Merrey, Gibson, Langley, Grieve, Purdy, Cochrane.
Bedford: Lane, Hutler, Coulson, Morris, Adamson, Hooley (Cons 45, 55, 74), Dickson, Trinder, Clare (Tries 40, 55), Cooper, Carrick-Smith, Flanagan, Blanchet, Buggea, Williams (Try 45). Bench: McCarthy, King, Curry, Worthington, Fields, Kennon, Shepherd.