NEWLY-promoted Birmingham and Solihull RFC made a winning start to the 2022/23 season with a 27-19 victory at Stoke Old Boys.
Alex Groves, James Pritchard, Ollie Sanderson and Lewis Edwards all crossed for tries with the latter claiming an individual 12-point haul.
The Bees are playing in the Counties 3 Midlands West (South) division this season following promotion last term whilst Stoke were relegated from the league above.
And the home side made the most of some early pressure to score from a rolling maul with the try converted to hand Stoke a seven-point lead.
However, the Bees responded almost immediately when the ball was shipped out to Groves who powered over in the corner to reduce the deficit to two points.
And Solihull struck again from the restart as Cam May scooped up a loose ball before making a break and offloading to Pritchard to score under the posts with Edwards adding the conversion.
Edwards then kicked a penalty to extend Solihull’s lead to eight points at the break.
Stoke had two players sent to the sin bin in the second period and the Bees made the most of their numerical advantage as Sanderson and Edwards both dotted down – the latter scoring a superb solo try.
The hosts scored a breakaway try under the posts and another from a driving maul to set up an exciting finish but the Bees held firm to come away with a bonus point victory.
The Bees are next in action at home to Bedworth on Saturday, September 10 with kick-off at 3pm at Portway.