Rugby Union: Cooke promises heat treatment for Bedford

Bedford 22 Newcastle 29

THE RAIN had only just relented at the end of a match of equally unremitting physical confrontation. The warm, dry safety of the dressing- room beckoned, but not for Bedford. "I'm going to give the players hell," promised Geoff Cooke, Bedford's chief executive, director of rugby, joint coach and acceptable public face.

The subject of Cooke's ire was the decision, taken twice in the last six minutes with the scores tied at 22-all, to kick for goal from penalties at roughly 30 metres distance. Tony Yapp, Cooke felt, should have been booting for the corner and an attacking line-out, not at the posts. Yapp missed, twice.

Of course if Rob Andrew had not launched a deadly counter-attack in the dying seconds to set up Newcastle's winning try by the scrum-half Gary Armstrong, the reaction might have been less strained. But if Cooke's outburst can be forgiven, so surely can Yapp.

The outside-half had already slotted five penalty goals and a conversion in testing conditions. Only once, through Junior Paramore in first-half injury time, had Bedford unpicked the tight Newcastle defence for a try.

As it was, Andrew intelligently kicked long from deep, Bedford's retreating wing Ben Whetstone was forced to concede a line-out, and Armstrong aquaplaned over from the ensuing maul. Andrew converted and that effectively made it game, set and match to an old pal of Cooke's from those now far off but seemingly less complicated days as England coach and manager.

Short-termism preoccupies both these clubs. Newcastle, whose earlier tries by Tony Underwood, Jim Naylor and Tuigamala each testified to the Falcons' twin attributes of pace and battering ram power, are to give their Gateshead experiment the heave-ho after this weekend's match against Saracens. At Bedford there are rumours of new investment, but only, say the whispers, if Frank Warren departs the scene.

Nineteen of the club's 20 new executive boxes were occupied on Saturday, and the attendance was close to 4,000, which was respectable enough in the circumstances. But with annual running costs of around pounds 450,000 plus a wage bill of pounds 100,000 a month, Bedford's numbers do not add up.

They have the talent to stay in Premiership One, but they need that investment soon.

Bedford: Try Paramore; Conversion Yapp; Penalties Yapp 5. Newcastle: Tries Underwood, Naylor, Tuigamala, Armstrong; Conversions Wilkinson, Andrew 2; Penalty Wilkinson.

Bedford: S Howard; B Whetstone, J Ewens, A Murdoch, D O'Mahony; T Yapp, C Harrison (R Elliott, 69); N Hatley, J Richards, V Hartland (C Boyd, h-t), D Zaltzman, A Duke, J Cockle (M Deans, 59), J Forster, J Paramore

Newcastle Falcons: P Massey; T Underwood, M Shaw, R Andrew, V Tuigamala; J Wilkinson (J Naylor, h-t), G Armstrong; N Popplewell ( G Graham, 49), R Nesdale, I Peel, G Archer, D Weir, P Walton, S O'Neill, D Ryan.

Referee: C Reeks (Somerset).

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Web Application Developer / Software Developer

£21000 - £23000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This software development compa...

Recruitment Genius: Brand Manager

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: Do you wish to be part of an exciting journey ...

Guru Careers: Talent Manager

£30-35k (P/T - Pro Rata) + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking an experienc...

Anna Woodward: Invoicing Clerk

£21,500: Anna Woodward: The Accounts Payable team for this group is recruiting...

Day In a Page

HIV pill: Scientists hail discovery of 'game-changer' that cuts the risk of infection among gay men by 86%

Scientists hail daily pill that protects against HIV infection

Breakthrough in battle against global scourge – but will the NHS pay for it?
How we must adjust our lifestyles to nature: Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch

Time to play God

Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch where we may need to redefine nature itself
MacGyver returns, but with a difference: Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman

MacGyver returns, but with a difference

Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman
Tunnel renaissance: Why cities are hiding roads down in the ground

Tunnel renaissance

Why cities are hiding roads underground
'Backstreet Boys - Show 'Em What You're Made Of': An affectionate look at five middle-aged men

Boys to men

The Backstreet Boys might be middle-aged, married and have dodgy knees, but a heartfelt documentary reveals they’re not going gently into pop’s good night
Crufts 2015: Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?

Crufts 2015

Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?
10 best projectors

How to make your home cinema more cinematic: 10 best projectors

Want to recreate the big-screen experience in your sitting room? IndyBest sizes up gadgets to form your film-watching
Manchester City 1 Barcelona 2 player ratings: Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man?

Manchester City vs Barcelona player ratings

Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man at the Etihad?
Arsenal vs Monaco: Monaco - the making of Gunners' manager Arsene Wenger

Monaco: the making of Wenger

Jack Pitt-Brooke speaks to former players and learns the Frenchman’s man-management has always been one of his best skills
Cricket World Cup 2015: Chris Gayle - the West Indies' enigma lives up to his reputation

Chris Gayle: The West Indies' enigma

Some said the game's eternal rebel was washed up. As ever, he proved he writes the scripts by producing a blistering World Cup innings
In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare and murky loyalties prevails

In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare

This war in the shadows has been going on since the fall of Mr Yanukovych
'Birdman' and 'Bullets Over Broadway': Homage or plagiarism?

Homage or plagiarism?

'Birdman' shares much DNA with Woody Allen's 'Bullets Over Broadway'
Broadchurch ends as damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

A damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

Broadchurch, Series 2 finale, review
A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower: inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

Inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower