Mansfield conquer old rivals Moderns to lift coveted trophy

Action from Mansfield's fine victory at home to old rivals, Moderns.
Action from Mansfield's fine victory at home to old rivals, Moderns.

Spirited Mansfield emerged victorious, 36-21, from the latest clash with old rivals, Nottingham Moderns, for the right to lift the coveted Stag And Swan Trophy.

Although the match was officially a fixture in the Midlands 3 East (North) division of the National League, the sides have played for the trophy, named after their emblems, for many years.

Moderns had edged the previous two contests, so Mansfield were keen to put things right and started the contest with fire and determination, surging into a comfortable 19-3 lead by half-time.

Hooker Zak Walters burrowed over to register the first points of the game, and then the lead was doubled to 14-0 by veteran scrum-half Terry Davies and by successful conversions from Taran Elmas.

Moderns replied with a penalty, but Mansfield were dominant in the scrum and finished the half with a third try from Adam Rowbottom.

The visitors hit back well at the start of the second period, scoring a penalty and then a wonderful try of their own, carving up the Mansfield defence to reduce the deficit to 19-11.

Mansfield were soon on the front foot again, though, as Harry Brough crossed the line for the bonus-point try before a penalty increased the lead to 29-11.

Rob Marsden added their final try and although Moderns finished the game with two more tries, the day belonged to Mansfield, with tenacious youngster Billy Toon taking the man-of-the-match award.