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The U18s and U16s rugby teams narrowly missed out on victory in the County Cup Finals. For both teams, it was the second consecutive year they had reached the finals.
The U18s were defending their title against Robert Smythe; the first half was a tightly contested affair with both teams having their fair share of possession.
Ashby got the first points through a Rob McCarron penalty to make it 3-0 but straight after, the opposition put the pressure on going through some good phase play and scoring a penalty to even the game up.
The final 10 minutes of the half was all Ashby but failed to scored on points, which then resulted in Robert Smythe getting a break away try to make it 8-3 at half time. The game was finely balanced at half time with either team looking like they could run away with it.
After the break, Robert Smythe came out of the blocks and scored the first points of the half to go 15-3 up. They scored another couple of tries which were fully deserved by the opposition. Ashby got a try back themselves but the final scored was 30-8. The lads put in a valiant effort but just came short this time after winning the competition this time last year.
U16s played Lutterworth in a much tighter contest. Both teams looked up for the game when warming up and with a big crowd of supporters coming to watch, it had the making to be a classic. After losing in last year's final, Ashby were looking to make amends.
The first score came from Lutterworth who scored a runaway try after Ashby put on some early pressure in the opposition half with some great defensive work from Joe Muddimer and Aidan Jones. After the first five minutes it was 5-3 to Lutterworth.
Josh Orme-Herbert soon read the opposition patterns of play superbly to get a try back with a 70 metre interception; and sprinting clear of any defenders trying to try and catch him up. Again Lutterworth came straight back and scored to make it 10-10.
There was some highly competitive and exhilarating play, with some excellent displays of rugby. Kane Davies the captain, got the next score with a trade mark barrelling run to crash over to take the lead into the half at 15-13.
The second half started much like the first with high intensity, big tackles coming in from both sides.
Lutterworth got the first points of the second half to take the lead 16-15. Soon after, they scored a try to take a bigger lead of 23-12. Ashby were not down hearted and came straight back at them, thanks to some dazzling footwork by Jack O'Regan which put Ashby within a point of the opposition with eight minutes to go.
Ashby were dominating play and got a penalty which Jack O'Regan converted, putting Ashby in the lead 25-22, with four minutes left. It looked as though Ashby would hold out, but in the last play of the game Lutterworth found some space in the corner to dot down.
There was a brief pause while the referee discussed with his assistant referee as it was close to the touch line but the try was awarded and Lutterworth won the county cup 30-25. The disappointed faces said it all,; the lads knew they could have won the game and become the county champions but it was heartbreak again for the Year 11s.
PE teacher Ricky Wickwar said: "I am immensely proud of both teams. It was a huge achievement to reach the finals but a shame they couldn't quite get the wins this time around. Both sets of lads were fantastic supporting one another when the other year group were playing and it was a fantastic evening with some great support."
Report by Ricky Wickwar