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24 April 2021

History was made this morning when the Swinton Lionesses Under 16s team took to the field for the very first time!

The game was played at Folly Lane’s Blue Ribbon Field at Pendlebury, and was therefore effectively the first occasion that a team under the Swinton Lions banner had played in the M27 post code in some 29 years. In a strange twist of fate, Simon Ashcroft’s daughter Eve featured for the Lionesses – Simon of course having made his Swinton debut in the Lions’ first post-Station Road game back in 1992.

Sadly owing to Covid protocol currently governing community Rugby League, there was only extremely limited immediate family and club officials permitted to see the game, but hopefully before too long the Lionesses will be able to welcome a wider audience.

Facing the Lionesses was a strong and experienced Elland team from West Yorkshire, but the home team got off to a blistering start and raced into a 22-0 lead in the first half. Skye Johnson made history with the first try, whilst Ellie Thirkell scored a couple – one of which was particularly special. Ruth Boamah also scored a fine try, and full-back Maddison Higson added 3 conversions.

In a hotly contested second-half, Elland took advantage of their experience and the widening spaces as the Lionesses understandably tired in the warm sun. But although a late converted try snatched it for Elland, the final score was irrelevant on this memorable day in the history of Swinton Rugby League Club.

Every one of the Lionesses did themselves and their new team proud!


 LIONESSES: Maddison Higson (3 goals); Eve Ashcroft; Catherine Sweeney; Ruth Boamah (1 try); Mollie Scotson; Ellie Thirkell (2 tries); Skye Johnson (try); Abbie Parkes-Holden; Sophie Martins-Featherston; Emily Haley.


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