BANN took to the pitch under strict orders to use their power through the middle and their pace out wide.
In the first five minutes the pacy William Wilson made 20 metres down the narrow side. Deep in the Virginia “22” the ball was quickly recycled to Matthew Blain who crashed over for the opening score.
It was at this point the game became very hard to watch. With Virginia being more aggressive and having better ball retention, after a number of missed tackles their tall winger scored in the corner. Adam Ferris was setting a fine example in the forwards with an all-action display but he lacked support. As half time approached changes were going to have to be made.
Within 10 minutes of the game re-starting Virginia had grabbed another two converted scores though their winger and centre.
Alistair McDowell and Morgan Topping quickly found themselves in the mix. Almost immediately a change in attitude came within the team. The big ball carriers, Lee Jackson and Adam Cromwell, started to work and Jackson found himself bouncing several Virginia players to score.
A rejuvenated Bann now seemed to realise their mistakes of earlier. Ben Reid was next to put his mark on the game. After finding himself in space with two opponents to beat he easily outwitted and outpaced them to cross the line and bring the final score to 19-15.
Bann’s fight-back was too little too late. With a big squad there are boys itching to get on the pitch. A change in attitude all over the pitch is needed and this needs to start at training on Monday night as the players prepare for the visit of Rainey next week.
On the plus side John Buller and Conor Burns were stand-out performers in the backs.
Adam Ferris was the best Banbridge player on display. His leadership qualities and attitude are there for all to see and his work-rate and skills are second to none.