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Report: London Scottish 18-22 Bristol Rugby

Bristol Rugby’s unbeaten start to the campaign continued with a narrow 22-18 defeat of London Scottish in the B&I Cup on Saturday.

Mark Cooke struck seventeen points in a scrappy affair at the Richmond Athletic Ground, while Luke Eves crossed for a second half try.

Bristol controlled the opening exchanges and took an early lead courtesy of Mark Cooke’s simple penalty goal.

Soon after, Darren Hudson was forced to react quickly to prevent a London Scottish try when the full back beat the advancing Miles Mantella to a grubber kick through.

The visitors continued to withstand a spell of pressure, before Mark Cooke’s second successful three pointer doubled the advantage to 0-6.

But London Scottish turned the game on its head when Miles Mantella continued his scoring form against Bristol, darting over for a converted try following a well-worked backline move.

Another Cooke penalty edged Andy Robinson’s men back in front, before Nick Koster was yellow carded before the interval.

And, in the last play of the half, Adam Kwasnicki rumbled over the whitewash for an unconverted try, handing the hosts a narrow 12-9 lead.

Peter Lydon added two successful penalty goals after the break to put London Scottish in control of proceedings, but Bristol hit back to find a route back into the game.

First, Mark Cooke struck a penalty goal, before James Phillips was sin-binned for an off-the-ball tackle.

With Scottish reduced to fourteen men, Luke Eves spotted a gap in the home defence to race in under the posts, while Cooke’s conversion ensured Bristol regained a narrow one-point advantage.

Cooke’s fine game continued with a further three points from the boot as the visitors held out for a narrow B&I Cup victory.

London Scottish:

Peter Lydon; Charlie Dockery, Connor Braid, PJ Gidlow, Miles Mantella; Dan Newton, Jamie Stevenson; James Hallam, Adam Kwasnicki, Stewart Maguire, James Phillips, Adam Preocanin, Neil Best, Chris Walker, Mark Bright (c).

Replacements: Mark Lilley (for James Hallam, 78 mins), Dave Cherry (for Adam Kwasnicki, 78 mins), Max Maidment (for Stweart Maguire, 63 mins), Tai Tuisamoa, Gregor Gillanders, Matt Heeks (for Jamie Stevenson, 52 mins), Chris Auld (for Charlie Dockery, 63 mins).

Bristol Rugby:

Darren Hudson; Jack Wallace, Luke Eves, Mark Cooke, Charlie Amesbury; Callum Sheedy, Craig Hampson; Ellis Genge, Chris Brooker, Gaston Cortes, Ben Glynn, Glen Townson (c), Nick Koster, Olly Robinson, Josh Ovens.

Replacements: Max Crumpton (for Chris Brooker, 53 mins), Kyle Traynor (for Ellis Genge, 56 mins), Joe Joyce (for Ben Glynn, 74 mins), James Stephenson, Luke Baldwin (for Craig Hampson, 53 mins), Nick Carpenter (for Callum Sheedy, 60 mins), Ryan Edwards.

Referee: Sean Gallagher