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Report: Bristol Bears Women 24–5 Richmond Women

Bristol Bears Women had to come from behind to secure a 24-5 bonus-point victory against Richmond Women at Shaftesbury Park on Saturday afternoon.

What Happened? 

Richmond were first on the score board with a try in the third minute. Following a penalty advantage, Zdunek powered over from short range to give the visitors the lead.

A string of knock-ons by Richmond gave the Bears and Amber Reed space to exploit and make some fine line breaks, but the hosts fell just short of the try line when Poppy Leitch was turned over.

Grand Slam winner Sarah Bern gave Bristol Bears their first points of the afternoon with some serious footwork that saw her shake off three defenders to cross under the posts. 

Shortly after, Bern was sin-binned as a result of the Bears conceding three penalties in their twenty-two.

Poppy Leitch in action at Shaftesbury Park (via JMPUK).

A slow start in the second half saw Richmond awarded multiple penalties, but the Bears held their own and their dominant scrummaging saw them turnover the ball on their five metre line.

Bears Women were down to fourteen once more when Lucy Attwood spent ten minutes in the bin for a high tackle, but a strong carry from replacement forward Flo Long enable Clara Neilson to dot down in the corner and put her side in front. 

Sarah Bern gave the home supporters something to shout about, once again displaying her bulldozing strength and pace with a forty-metre carry to put the Bears on the front-foot.

Bears Women hunted their opposition and pinned Richmond behind their own line which allowed Lucy Attwood to rip the ball from Povey and score, before again crossing under the posts in the last play of the game to secure a try bonus-point.


Bristol Bears Women: 15. Doidge, 14. Stoeger-Goddard, 13. Atwood, 12. Reed, 11. Murray, 10. Skuse, 9. Parker; 1. Keddie, 2. Nielson (C), 3. Bern, 4. Buckland-Hurry, 5. Cunningham, 6. Jefferies, 7. Mayes, 8. Leitch

Replacements: 16. Long, 17. Parsons, 18. Fawcett, 19. Settembri, 20 Mattinson, 21. Snowsill, 22. Burgess

Richmond Women: 15. Wooden, 14. Hellgren, 13. Lageretabua, 12. Pascall, 11. Daw, 10. Pomfret, 9. Braunerova; 1. Kapo, 2. Luff, 3. Zdunek, 4. Burnfield, 5. Hobday, 6. Povey, 7. Field (C), 8. Caplice

Replacements: 16. Butler, 17. McGauley, 18. Phelps, 19. Evans, 20. McIntosh, 21. Aucken, 22. Treco

Key Moment:

Clara Nielson

Having not been on the pitch for more than five minutes, Florence Long made her presence known. 

The forward broke off the back of a driving maul to find Clara Nielson with a clever offload and the Bears captain crossed in the corner to give her side the lead and inject some life into the Bears’ performance. 


Player of the match:

Lucy Attwood

Despite ten minutes in the bin Lucy Attwood had a solid performance at outside centre. 

The youngster cleverly picked off gaps in the Richmond defence all afternoon to give her side front-foot ball as well as being tenacious in defence. 

Attwood’s quick-fire double in the final ten minutes put the game beyond doubt wrapped up all five points for the Bear

Photo of the match:

All smiles for Sarah Bern as she scores the opening try for the Bears (via JMPUK).