Newton Aycliffe Rugby Club celebrated receiving their RFU Club Accreditation by beating Washington by 8 tries to 1 at Moore Lane. The current Durham RFU President John Scott visited the club to present them with their award.
This award is credit to the clubs ongoing commitment to improve, facilities, recruit new players and train players to coaching and refereeing standards and ultimately promote rugby union as a great sport in the immediate area.
Despite a number of players being unavailable, Aycliffe were able to select a strong team with the return of Jeff Hodgson, Gareth Parsonage and  Craig Holmes.
Washington have always had a strong pack of forwards and so it proved again.  They had the edge in the scrums and took the lead with a penalty goal.  Aycliffe struck back quickly when a tap penalty by Chris Richards was scored by Luke Tinkler.  Washington’s pack then made the most of a 5-metre scrum with a pushover try; the conversion giving them a 5-point lead.  Aycliffe tied the scores when, from another tap penalty, the ball was quickly passed out to Gareth Parsonage on the wing.
Yet another tap penalty produced Aycliffe’s third try when Jeff Hodgson powered over, with Tinkler adding the conversion.  The scoring in the first half was completed when good handling in the backs saw Luke Crossen cross in the corner to secure the bonus point.  The score at the break was 22 – 10.
Aycliffe were well on top in the second half, with the back row performing well: Andy Littlefair and Warren Parsonage were punching holes in the opposition, and Chris Knight put in a fine stint of tackling, hooker Sam Daltry was also excellent with his rucking.
Despite the scrum problems, the lineout was dominant, with Ronnie Gilyeat winning more than his share of ball.  The first try of the half took some time to arrive, but when it did, it was Hodgson who added is second.  James Thacker scored two tries in quick succession to put the game beyond Washington’s reach.  The visitors had a number of penalties, but chose to take the kicks at goal rather than go for the try, adding a further 6 points to their total.  The game finished with a try from Holmes and a fourth conversion from Tinkler for a 48 – 16 win.
Aycliffe’s next game will is a visit to high-flying Winlaton Vulcans on 11th January.  The game will kick-off at 2.15pm.  Newton Aycliffe are sponsored by Boola Clothing Aycliffe and Hayward Home Appliances, trading as Serviceforce. Visit the website at