NORTH Shields Artisans played their first match of 2013 and started with a fine win.
Morpeth Stags were unable to raise a side so Ashington 3rd XV stepped in to provide the opposition for this friendly match at Preston Playing Fields.
Tony Lion led the side in Fen Taylor’s absence. The match was played with uncontested scrums so Tommy Rendles and Julian Jamieson filled in at prop.
John Jones started on the wing while Alan Miller played for Ashington to give them a full side.
It was a comfortable afternoon for the Artisans and Bruce Parker was first on the score sheet with a try. Gary Crombie quickly followed that up although the first two conversions were missed by Crombie.
Full-back Duncan Steed was the next try scorer with new kicker Daniel Quine adding the extras.
Bruce Parker scored his second which was converted before Ashington hit back with a converted try.
A Parker double before half-time, one of which was converted gave the interval score of 36-7 to the Artisans.
At half-time Tony Hanson came on at scrum-half with Jack Rendles moving to the wing.
The second half saw the Artisans score five more tries from Tony Hanson, Peter Dyers (two) and two more from Bruce Parker to take his total to six for the match.
Daniel Quine was successful with two of the conversion attempts to give the final score 65-7 to the Artisans.