Ashbrooke youngsters double up

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SUNDERLAND claimed the double, after a storming display in one of Durham’s biggest junior rugby festivals.

The Ashbrooke club’s Under-7s and U8s both lifted the Darlington Mowden Park titles after unbeaten runs in the tag rugby tournament.

The U8 Crusaders pipped Stockton 55-45, before cruising to a 85-30 victory over hosts Mowden Park. They then polished off Durham City Golds 40-25, with the blitz defence forcing numerous turnovers.

Meanwhile, the U8 Vikings beat Bishop Auckland A (50-45) and Bishop Auckland B (50-30), losing out narrowly to Durham City Reds (40-30). With Durham Reds and West Hartlepool also unbeaten, it came down to tries scored.

Bizarrely, however an administrative error saw Durham awarded the U8s trophy, before Mowden officials later realised the Crusaders had, in fact, scored one try more (36 to Durham’s 35), therefore emerging as winners.

At U7 level, the Scorpions beat Westoe Reds 55-50, Westoe Blues 60-35, Mowden Park Tigers 55-45 and Bishop Auckland Tigers 45-40 to lift the cup.

The Skeletons drew 20-20 with Guisborough before beating Mowden Park Bears (45-25), West Hartlepool (60-50) and Billingham (85-40).

H Sunderland U8s also lifted the bowl at the Alnwick Festival, with wins over Morpeth and Novocastrians.

Pictures in tonight’s Sunderland Echo.