The Academys 2018/19 National Cup campaign got under way with a home fixture against Lutterworth Colts in almost ideal playing conditions and in front of a decent size crowd. Amps playing up the slope conceded an early three points from a penalty and struggled to settle into their game with penalty after penalty being awarded to Lutterworth and Adam Shelley visiting the sin bin after only 9 minutes.
Against the run of play, a 30metre run up the left wing, beating 2 defenders on the outside, saw winger
Dan Chalmers cross the whitewash and got Ampthill onto the scoreboard with Fyn Cook making the conversion. The course of the match changed and settling now into a better rhythm the Academy took hold of the game and the penalty count reduced. Outside centre Jamie Bell having another good game with his threatening running lines was the next to score to make it 12 points to 3 after 30 minutes. Pierce Holland in the forwards dominated at the breakdowns with his pick and goes, taking the Lutterworth defence back metre after metre. The final try of the game came just before half time when scrum half Charlie Stevens, returning from injury, took the ball on the blind side from a ruck and sprinted 25 metres up the right wing to score. Fyn made the conversion and oranges were taken with the score 19 points to 3 in Ampthills favour.
The second half was played at a high intensity with both sides threatening but both sides also defending very strongly. Amps scored 2 penalties through Fyn Cook and Lutterworth were consistently held up short of the Amps try line. The game finished, unfortunately, with some handbags in front of the A’s posts involving just about every player, and from which a player from each side was yellow carded and Sam Stirling received a red card.
A final score of 25 points to 3 and Ampthill Academy move on to play Ashby at home in the next round of the National Cup on Saturday 17th November. The next game is an East Midlands clash v Kettering at home on Saturday 3rd November.