By Andrew McKaysmith
Bond University were beaten by Easts Tigers 32 -28 in tight a contest in round 4 of the Hospital Challenge Cup at Bond rugby headquarters on the weekend.
Outscoring Easts five ties to four, left wing Ryan Menzies bagged a double, but it wasn’t going to be enough to overcome a 20-point deficit at the half hour mark.
Coach Brad Harris said the team had played some quality rugby to claw back the big lead and get ahead of Easts before they were overcome in the final five minutes.
“Senior members of the squad are out injured at the moment which is a bit of a challenge and that’s having an impact on the team that we field,” he said.
“But ultimately, we take away that start where we conceded 20 points, I thought we played some really good football.
“We probably played better football for the majority of the game but there were times that we were making errors that were hurting us.”
With the Easter break next week and a bye the following, Bond’s next clash is in round 6 against a Souths side who lost close encounter at Chipsy Wood Oval against GPS on the weekend.
Souths 1-3 record mirrors that of Bond and Mr Harris said the match is shaping as a crucial contest.
“Souths will have a number of their rep players back for that game, and they are certainly an attacking threat as they love to run the ball from everywhere,” he said.
“It's a bit of a different challenge (compared) to some of the other teams in the competition, but hopefully our boys go away and have a rest and recharge.
“It’s a pivotal game now for our season, we’ve really got to go up there and try and perform well and get a result.”
Bond missed last year’s finals series largely through a sluggish start that saw the team drop five games from their opening six.
Mr Harris said that he recognised the need for a better start in 2019 and even if the wins haven’t been as forthcoming, the effort has still yielded valuable competition points.
“Statistically, one of the things that we did talk about which hasn't really come to fruition was starting a little bit better than what we did last year,” he said.
“Last year I think the side was 1-4 and in a similar position but we've picked out three bonus points so even though we’ve only won one game we’ve picked up three bonus points.
“If we can continue to show the same endeavour and continue to work hard so we can just be more consistent across the 80 minutes, then we’ll be in with a chance to win most games.”