Ashington once again let down by poor first half show

Ashington produced another poor first half performance lacking pride and passion as they turned around 29-0 down at half-time against Winlaton.

Their defence was not helped by the loss of centre Barry Metcalfe to injury after 15 minutes.

The positives in a poor first half were a strong scummage, in which Duncan Henderson seems to get better with age, good tackling by Gareth Newman around the fringes, Brian Merryweathers’ cover tackling and Connor Nichols’ good positional play at full-back.

When Ashington did get into attacking positions their lineout failed to function and they lost several attacking lineouts when their hooker failed to hit his jumpers.

The second half began with Ashington at last showing some real passion and power.

Prop Tom Higham had successfully taken over the throwing-in duties at the lineout and he was unlucky to be held up over the try line after a period of sustained pressure.

Both second rows Butler and Groves and player coach Rosser also produced powerful runs near the try line.

During this period centre Andrew Elliott, running a strong inside line, bounced off two tackles to score a well deserved try which he converted.

Prior to this Winlaton had scored a well taken try in a move going the length of the pitch.

Winlaton added a further three tries but this did not really reflect a more even second half in terms of territory and effort.

In the third team cup final Ashington 3rds lost 24-0 to a strong Tynedale team.