MIRFIELD STAGS made the perfect return to action after two years away, beating East Leeds 38-24 at home in the Pennine League Division One.
The Stags ran in points in the closing stages of the contest following a tightly-contested opening 70 minutes to ensure their season began with a win.
Brad Delaney led the way with a hat-trick of tries and Ben Kendall crossed for a brace, while Nathan Hadfield and Mikey Otty also got over the line. Wayne Wilson kicked five goals.
Mirfield head coach Richard Silverwood said: “I thought we showed some character on Saturday to come from behind a few times and grind out a good win against a very impressive East Leeds team.
“There is plenty to work on in training this week but to win a game like that will do us the world of good going forward.
“I certainly think it gave us a taste of what this league is going to be like.”
In Division Two, Shaw Cross Sharks began their season with a 20-12 win away at King Cross Park.
They were behind at the break despite Brad Baines and Owen Lumb tries, but were stronger in the second half with Jack Richardson and Luke Hudson crossing to earn the win.
Sharks coach Andrew Tillotson said: “I couldn’t ask for a better start to the season, the lads were solid and gave their all.
“We have only had a couple of training sessions and we have mainly worked on attack and being smart with the ball. In my opinion it was our defence that won us the game today, it was brilliant.”
Elsewhere in Division Two, Thornhill Trojans also began their campaign with a win, defeating Seacroft Sharks 30-16 at home.
Tomorrow (Saturday), Mirfield go to Illingworth while Hanging Heaton start their Division One season at East Leeds. Thornhill are away at Clayton in Division Two.