Bristol Rugby talking point: Bristol 23 Bedford Blues 13
BRISTOL ended Bedford Blues' unbeaten start to the season with a gutsy performance at the Memorial Stadium today, reminding themselves and the rest of the Championship that they can still have a big impact this season.
The hosts' 23-13 victory was built on a resolute defence; every player tackling fiercely when called upon, while two tries from Luke Eves effectively settled the contest.
After three straight defeats in the Championship and two victories in the British & Irish Cup, Bristol recorded their most impressive result so far this season to keep in touch with the top four. Victory at Nottingham next weekend could even propel Liam Middleton's side into the play-off places.
After a rocky start to the season, today's performance suggested Bristol may be about to turn a corner. Finding some consistency will be the next challenge.
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But the return of players such as Jack Tovey, Adrian Jarvis, Redford Pennycook, Ross Johnston and James Merriman has given Bristol a more balanced look, while academy graduates Ryan Edwards, Mitch Eadie and Jack Gadd have now been involved in a big victory. What today's win will do for their confidence remains to be seen - but they now surely feel as if they belong in the upper echelons of the Championship.
Have Bristol turned the corner - and can they maintain the form they showed this afternoon?