Lionhearted Roosters pair play for England

Paul Ashbridge and Adam Peel part of Three Lions side defeated by Wales

ST IVES ROOSTERS duo Paul Ashbridge and Adam Peel played for England Lionhearts on Saturday.

While their Roosters team mates were busy battling it out in a Conference East Regional play-off semi-final at Sudbury Gladiators, the influential pair were part of the England side that were beaten 30-24 by Grand Slam winning Wales in the Home Nations Trophy.

Their presence was badly missed at Sudbury, as the Roosters missed out on a place in the play-off final in gut-wrenching fashion, conceding a last-minute try in a 28-24 defeat.

And, although admitting being selected for the national amateur side is a massive honour, Ashbridge spoke of his disappointment at the schedule that forced him and Peel to miss the Roosters semi.

He said: “Everyone wants to play for their country, but it does put a strain on the club, because we’d had done well to get to a semi-final in the first place.

“You don’t want players to find themselves in a situation where they have to choose between club and country.”

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Meanwhile on the duo’s Three Lions recognition, Roosters chairman Sue Gaunt said: “It’s always a massive honour for our club to have players selected for England.

“We have a great record of developing players and long may it continue.”

Turn to page 66 for a report from Saturday’s play-off semi-final between St Ives Roosters and Sudbury Gladiators.