Ayr emerged victorious from a 12-try spectacular in which both sides claimed try bonus points indicating how both were prepared to attack.
Logan Trotter found a huge gap in midfield to put the visitors ahead, in five minutes, but, after a ten-minute interruption while Ayr lock Robert McAlpine was stretchered off with a neck injury, the home side immediately got on terms, prop Steven Longwell off-loading brilliantly for Scott Lyle to go over. Ayr then stretched their lead, Frazier Climo ghosting through a gap to score, before Lyle added a penalty goal, then, just before the break, Ayr’s Blair Macpherson bulldozed over to make it 24-7 at the break.
English referee George Selwood had to deal with an international incident in the 42nd minute, yellow-carding Bahamian internationalist George Hunter of Ayr and opposite number Frenchman Remy Chies. He then made it 14 v 13 by yellow-carding Ayr’s Gregor Henry. County made the extra man pay, with Jonny Hope scoring a brace of converted tries to make it a three-point game, 24-21.
But, Robbie Nairn’s try with his first touch gave Ayr their bonus point. This was followed quickly by a converted Lyle try from a superb break by South African lock Michael Badenhuist, before a Pete Jericevich try converted by Hope offered just that to the visitors. We had now gone to unopposed scrums, and young scrum-half Harry Warr stretched the Ayr lead with an unconverted try, before Stafford McDowall made the game safe.
Climo then collected a yellow card and County benefitted as Ruaridh Swan went in for the final, unconverted try.