Ashfield U15s had a long wait for home side Buxton to arrive, but still pulled off a 19-15 win.
The wait appeared to have a detrimental effect on Ashfield, and they were slow to start and react in the opening minutes which allowed Buxton space to pass and run which led to them taking the first try and go 7-0 up.
Matt Moore used his power and driving momentum to force through the Buxton defence for Ashfield’s first try and Ashfield were right back in the contest at 7-5.
The second half was a different story for Ashfield as the entire team came back on to deliver a much improved all-round performance, with Moore outstanding and earning man of the match.
Owen Layton aggressively got the ball over for Ashfield’s second try. Bradshaw kicking well into the sun for the extras.
However, Ashfield did switch off and let Buxton through a gap and they eased over their second try. A straightforward kick between the posts then put Buxton right back into it, and they took the lead back at 14-12.
But Ashfield continued to exploit Buxton’s errors and Conor Barnard drove strongly over the line for Ashfield’s third and final try, Bradshaw converting to seal the win.
Ashfield U14s saw off Stamford 43-19 with a fine second half show in their second Shield fixture to go top of the group.
Stamford started well to go 12-0 up, but Ashfield didn’t waver in their determination and were rewarded with two tries of their own, the first scored by man of the match Jack Cutts, who rampaged over the line from a penalty 10m out.
The scores were level at half-time and the match hung in the balance.
But Ashfield came out with all guns blazing and ran in five more tries.
This really was a whole team performance with seven tries scored by six players.
Mansfield Giants gained revenge for last year’s cup final defeat by beating Ashfield Development Squad 43-15 in a friendly game, Danny Wilson, Chris Warnes and Richard Hutchinson with Ashfield’s tries.
Ashfield U15 Girls were beaten 54-0 by West Park St Helens in a physical game at Polly Bowls ground in a game of rugby that was not for the squeamish.
No quarter was asked and none given by either side in a level of physicality not normally associated with girls’ rugby.
Ashfield started as if they had travelled the 100 miles from Merseyside and not the visitors, but after conceding three early tries the girls rallied and tackled their hearts out, none more so than player of the match Holly Felton.
This was by no means the one sided match that the score suggests and with a little more luck the Ashfield girls could have been on level terms with 10 minutes to go, until they tired to concede four late tries.