28-4 to Wigan St Judes Women
After a fractured summer, it was finally time to get the team playing in the WRLA winter league for the first time in Ashton Bears history. Having lost some integral players to Wigan Warriors and universities, it was time for the squad to fill those gaps and begin to work as unit.
Unfortunately, the team looked exactly like they were, disjointed at training and lacking their go-to players on the pitch, and quickly fell 3 tries down before beginning to find their groove. A great try from Rachel Bosy (her first for the club), followed by debuts to two players, both having never played before, and have celebrated their 40th birthdays! The first half finished 22-4 and the coaches had some work to do in their half-time tactics to prevent the game from running away from the Bears.
10 minutes into the second half, a serious injury to prop Sophie Stevenson (suspected MCL) meant that the debutants would be needed more than anticipated in the pre-game, but neither Karen Shearer nor Kristina Masiulyte-Tomkiene would let the team down, digging in with the defence, and driving the ball into the opposition. The second half was much more of a contest as the Bears began to understand each others' games better, working as a unit and defending with more cohesion than in the first half. The score in the second half was a close 6-0 to St Judes, with a final score of 28-4. Plenty to work on in training, but a great second half effort from a team that have barely even trained together. Bring on Methley Warriors next weekend!
Credit to Brian at King's Pix for the photos