Titans look to rebuild after crushing finale

TITANS head coach Andre Bester can focus fully on his rebuilding project this summer after the disappointing play off campaign ended with a crushing 80-19 defeat at semi finalists Bedford Blues.

Rotherham failed to win a single game in the six match group stage and saw the campaign close with a whimper, despite competing well during the first half and turning round just seven points behind.

But the wheels came off the defence after the break, with eight tries conceded.

Tries from prop Mark George and scrum-half Matthew Rhodes helped the Titans into an early 12-7 lead with 20 minutes gone, and they were only one try down at the break with departing centre Juan Pablo Socino converting his own try just before the break.

But that was to prove their last points of the match and of the season while Bedford ran riot, almost scoring at will with one eye on the semi finals.

Right winger Handers Schmidt ran in a hat-trick of tries for the Blues – one in the first half and two in the second – while replacement scrum-half Will Chudley scored two.

And left winger James Pritchard also scored two tries and kicked 10 conversions to finish with an impressive personal tally of 30 points.

Top class fly half Socino has opted to join Nottingham leaving Rotherham with a big hole to fill after scoring more than 200 points in the Championship this season.

Also departing is assistant coach Adam Bradley.

Bester has already recruited huge Tongan forwards Talite Vaioleti and Semisi Taulava from Wharfedale and Birmingham respectively, plus Adrian Griffiths.