A new season came complete with a successful start as St Ives launched their Midlands Division Three East (South) challenge in triumphant style.

Phil Brown's Bulls men saw off Daventry 24-6 at sodden Somersham Road last Saturday.

St Ives spent the opening quarter camped deep in their own territory, but league debutant David Stone, Michael Wright and Paul Ashbridge all excelled during a fine defensive effort.

Ashbridge and Stone were also prominently involved as St Ives escaped upfield to claim the opening try of the season - the latter touching down after some slick handling from the former.

Max Dominy did the honours with the conversion, but St Ives saw their lead slashed to a point courtesy of two Daventry penalties before the break.

Dominy responded in the second half with a successful penalty of his own before Mickey Drake darted in for a try under the posts.

And another soon followed as Ashbridge burst though a couple of tackles and sped round the visiting full-back to cross the line.

Dominy kicked the extras on both occasions to complete a satisfying start to the season.

St Ives skipper Josh Dear said: "We have set the bar high for this season.

"I asked for a performance to match the investment made in the club and kit, and I definitely got it."

St Neots, who received a reprieve from relegation after finishing bottom last season, began the new campaign with a 28-5 home defeat at the hands of Biggleswade.

St Neots now host Daventry this Saturday while St Ives are on the road at Dunstablians.