TRANENT 31st AUGUST 2019
Team: 15. D Binnie, 14. N Wood, 13. G Johncock, 12. F Doonan, 11. J Tocher, 10. M Cant, 9, D Jones, 8. O Seville, 7. D Tidy, 6. S Boendermaker, 5. S McCullough (Capt.), 4. S Jablonski, 3. M Razeto, 2. A Philip, 1. R Tidy. Subs: 16. J Ryan, 17. Copeland & 18. T Borrill (all used)
A tough task for our first real match of the season; away to a team from the division above that finished high up in Div 1 last season while we were winning Div 3.
Our task was further hampered by a couple of late call offs and a no show not to mention the gale blowing across the pitch!
We started poorly, giving Ross High (RH) too much respect and soon found ourselves 2 converted tries down. It seemed as if we suddenly realised that the opposition weren’t actually any better than us as we started to get our own game going and closing down the opposition more quickly when they had the ball. Indeed, for the majority of the game, our rejigged pack, featuring Richard’s 18 year old brother Doug, at open side, dominated their opposite numbers in most facets of the game.
The only area that was a total lottery was the lineout where the wind played havoc with the throws. It took RH about 25 minutes before they managed to score again then they did so again shortly afterwards. With both tries being converted and we were 28-0 down coming up to half time. RH weren’t expecting us to blast back, and after our first real pressure on the opposition line Doug Binnie crossed for a try wide out on the right. The difficult conversion was missed and it was 28-5 at half time.
We totally picked up our game in the second half with a well worked try from Graeme Johncock off a pass from Fionan Doonan. Mark Cant was successful with the conversion making it 28-12 with 28 minutes to go. We had a couple of other chances to cut the lead but either the pass wasn’t made or was poorly executed.
This score line would have been a better reflection of the game but we unfortunately leaked two late tries, both converted, to make the final score 42-12. With a patched together side this was overall a very good performance. Whatever pack we put out this season will be a match for the opposition and with players due back our backline can be very dangerous as sides found out last season.
Many players put their hands up to be “Man of the Match” including all of the pack. Given his non-stop work rate, breaching of the gain line and impressive low tackling Andy Philip is this weeks winner. Next Saturday sees the start of the league as we host Leith Accies. It will be a first outing for the 2’s as well when they play the same opponents away from home. We really need everyone to make the best possible effort to make themselves available as we need 30+ players to make this happen.