Dagenham got their Counties One Essex season back on track in style with a 68-10 victory at South Woodham Ferrers on Saturday.

With nine season debutants in the side, including three first-team debuts, this game provided a real opportunity for some fresh combinations to make their mark.

Dagenham started strongly, with debutant Dean Cheung scything through the defence and Lewis Pruce crashing over for the first try.

The hosts responded with some very physical defence and carrying of their own, earning a penalty just inside the Dagenham half which was duly converted.

The next score came from a well-worked scrum move, with the returning Jordan Calverley throwing a dummy and racing in, swiftly followed up by a great score from Mitchell Sinfield, set up by a break from halfway and audacious offload by Frankie Neale.

The bonus point try was wrapped up not long after, with Neale going through a gap close to the line after a number of strong carries by the pack.

But despite Dagenham being in the ascendancy, South Woodham refused to go down without a fight and they eventually managed to crash over for a converted try to make the half-time score 28-10. 

The second half started in physical fashion, with Dagenham working hard to break South Woodham's resolve as strong carrying from Earl Gorman, Pruce and debutant Niall Frederick splintered the defence, before Manti Simkus was able to use his strength to score under the posts.

Dagenham's 18-year-old scrum-half Liam Power Jr came off the bench for his senior debut, impressing with a mature performance and ensuring a quick tempo to the attacking play.

And it wasn’t long before a strong scrum set the platform and some good passing found captain Nat Farrell in space. Despite the attention of a couple of defenders, he was able to sprint in from just inside the Dagenham half.

Centre Cheung made another great break soon after and found Calverley to run in his second of the day, before Tommy Cameron found space on the blind-side of a ruck to dance down the touchline before a great step beat the full-back for a score under the posts.

Dagenham continued the assault and, after a few close-range carries, Fredericks powered through three defenders to score a try.

The final say went to captain Farrell, picking a strong line to burst over the line and bring his season-tally to seven tries as man-of-the-match Neale added nine of the 10 conversions to finish with 23 points on the day.

The second team drew 14-14 at Old Cooperians, in a game that was called early due to injuries to the home side, and competition for places in the Dagenham senior squad is high, with two games coming up at Central Park.

The first team host Braintree while the veterans team have a run out against Canvey Island.