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Winnington Park making winning start to new league season at home to Ashton-on-Mersey
WINNINGTON Park, despite eight enforced changes to the starting line-up from last weekend’s derby, eased to an opening day victory.
Predictably, they started slowly.
Ashton were denied a breakthrough through skipper Martin Boswell when he was tackled by Tom Witter, followed quickly by a Park raid to the other end that ended with captain Harry Stubbs claiming a pushover try.
Chris Heptinstall converted.
Stubbs strained a hamstring, prompting him to be replaced by Ben Richardson, but the hosts’ pressing was often undone by conceding soft penalties.
They did double their lead before the break though, Alex Glendinning showing a clean pair of heels to the visitors’ defence after Park’s new-look back-line combined well. Heptinstall again added the extras.
Ashton rallied though, spending time close to Winnington’s line that resulted in prop Nick Malpus crashing over. Mike Mills kicked the conversion.
Coach Mark Warr urged the home team to play at an increased pace in the second half, although their combination play continued to be disjointed with the final pass often going astray.
Ashton’s defence absorbed pressure, but they conceded again when Winnington countered with a fine collective movement.
Craig Lamb made progress, sending Danny Williams into the opposition’s 22. The ball, after being off-loaded, was recycled quickly to Oli Sanson who touched down.
Heptinstall’s third kick completed a deserved victory.
Park Hill, Sanson, Underdown, Taylor, Gately (White), Dykes, Danny Williams, Stubbs (Richardson), Jack Williams, Heptinstall, Glendinning, Reeks, Witter, Lamb, Jones Tries Stubbs, Glendinning, Sanson Cons Heptinstall (3)
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