So close!!!...Ashton narrowly lose out in final showdown.
Despite an excellent display in the Cheshire Plate Final, Ashton's under 12's narrowly lost out to Marple.
AOM 4 (2) -v- (2) 6 Marple
The Boys' made the long awaited trip to Caldy to take part in the Cheshire Plate Final with a real belief that they could secure their first piece of silverware. Marple had beaten Ashton 6-1 earlier in the season and it is a measure of how well the Boys' played and the progress they have made that this was such a closely contested match. Had Ashton been able to call upon the injured Ollie or the inelligible Seb and Harry P., then the result may have been different.
The first half was nip and tuck. Marple scored first but then Dillon powered over and Josh sprinted clear to secure a 2-1 lead. Marple came back strongly and tied the scores. Some excellent tackles stopped what looked like certain tries from Marple, with Matthew and then Josh holding up Marple's winger inches from the line. At half time and with the scores level, it was all to play for.
The key period of this game came just after half time when Marple exposed the usually tight Ashton brick wall to score twice. The Boys would not lie down though and scored a brilliant third try, driving up the middle before feeding the ball to a charging Joe. The pendulum then swung back to Marple as their bigger squad numbers began to show. With a 6-3 lead and time running out, Ashton dominated the closing stages surging at the Marple line. Eventually the ball was fed out to Nathan who still had lots to do but showed a real burst of speed to score in the left corner. A bitter sweet moment as the referee blew his whistle for full time.
Each and every Boy can be extremely proud of their performance. Etienne worked non-stop in an unfamiliar position, Matthew played through a knee injury (but you would never have known!), Ben charged in to tackles, Harry A. got involved in every phase of play, Niall and Dillon ran with real purpose and end product, Joe put in a fine display, Nathan scored a brilliant forth try, Michael was excellent at scrum half, Tom was his usual destructive self, Adam and Laurence worked tirelessly and Josh tackled everything that moved.
It may not have been quite the end to the season the Boys wanted, but they must take satisfaction from the fact they are now mixing it with the best teams in Cheshire. Next season they might just remember the little team with big hearts who never give up!
Squad - Etienne, Josh, Harry A., Joe, Nathan, Ben, Matthew, Niall, Dillon, Tom, Michael, Laurence, Adam
Tries - Dillon, Josh, Joe and Nathan
Man of the Match - Josh