A GOOD START & A STRONG FINISH
It was tense stuff !!
Saturday December 2
Midlands Two East North
A powerful late rally earned Newark victory in a tight and excellent contest at Kelham Road over Ashbourne.
Newark’s sixth league win of the campaign lifts them into third place behind Matlock and leaders West Bridgford who head the table by five points.
After the win at Southwell, Newark fielded a team showing six changes from that team including the return at lock of Rory Williams and back-rower Arran Riley who was influential substitute.
In between a good start and strong finish, Newark stuttered and struggled to keep tabs on Ashbourne who led 22-10 going into the final 10 minutes thanks to three tries, two coming in a five-minute spell in the second half.
However, Newark, who had led 12-10 at half-time, reserved their most sustained play until the final minutes which ultimately proved crucial.
Buds Waqalevu, a constant menace in midfield, scooted over for a second try, following a score in the first half, and, finally, Alex Scott finished off another sweeping move followed by a conversion.
It was tense stuff to finish a watchable contest on a mild December afternoon. Newark had looked set for a comfortable win when Tom Coen scored after only five minutes.
But Newark failed to dominate and Ashbourne always looked dangerous taking a 10-5 lead through a converted try and penalty before Waqalevu scored off a move from a line-out. Scott converted to give the home team a 12-10 at the break.
A subdued start to the second half handed the momentum back to Ashbourne who ran in two tries through some good attacking play.
At 12-22 Newark looked to be down and out, but they hauled themselves back into the match thanks to Waqalevu’s running which inspired that late rally.
Newark are away next Saturday (Dec 9) at Bakewell. Kick off 2.15pm tbc.
Team v Ashbourne: Mackie; Watts, Waqalevu, Britten, Hunter-Shaw; Scott, Max Chapple (capt); Coulam, Jed Chapple, Shiels, Boyd, Williams, Bartsch, Crosby, Coen.
Subs: Riley, Fotheringham, Stark.
Tries: Coen, Waqalevu (2), Scott.
Conversions: Scott (2).