1st XV vs Biggar: Match Programme

1st XV vs Biggar: Match Programme

Inverleith Angle

This afternoon we welcome Douglas Ward, President of Biggar Rugby Football Club, his players, Committee and supporters for this RBS Regional Cup competition pool match.

The format of the Cup has changed this year and we’re now playing a Regional Cup competition, with the Premier 1–3 Clubs being split into the four regions, namely Edinburgh, Glasgow, Borders and Caledonian. The winners of the Regional Cups will then compete in the National semi finals and finals.

Each Region was left to its own devices and the Edinburgh clubs agreed to play two pool matches, with one home and one away fixture, resulting in the winners of each pool going forward to compete in the Edinburgh Region semi finals and final.

Last week we played our first pool match in the Cup competition, which was against Watsonians at Myreside, and we lost 22-16. We’ve played better this season! Highlights were few and far between, but Mike Hanning showed his class when he weaved through a tight defence to score in the corner. It was also great to see Borth put on the “after burners” and speed past the defence to score in the other corner.

I looked at the “bench” at Myreside last Saturday and I was impressed by the strength in depth the Club now has. We had Liam Steele, Seb Trotter, Willie Aitken, Angus Lean, Joni Hare, George Turner, Ethan Brown and Phil Hendry. This, however, was not the “subs” bench but the injured players sitting in the stand! We also had Scott Riddell away with the Scotland 7s squad. While some will be out until the end of the year, others will be back playing soon.

The 2nd XV lost last weekend 10-16 to Currie at Inverleith. The top of the RBS Reserve League National 1 is now looking very tight, with Stew Mel and Heriot’s in joint first place on 42 points. They are closely followed by Currie and Edinburgh Accies on 41 points, but Currie have a game in hand on the other three teams. The boys are on the long road trip to Ayr today. Good luck, and I’m sure the return trip will feel shorter than the morning trip down to Ayr!

Last weekend the 3rd XV had its road trip against Haddington at Neilson Park. The long trip obviously got the better of the boys, who lost 21-7.

With all three teams losing last week, it was a reversal of the previous week’s “clean sweep” , when the 1st XV beat Selkirk, the 2nd XV beat Melrose 29–10 and the 3rd XV beat Selkirk 52–22, all at Inverleith.

I, like many others, was surprised that we didn’t get any home matches against Premier 1 opponents when the fixture list was published for the Premier B games. After I’d got over the shock, I remembered helping to coach a group of youngsters at a tournament a few years ago. They lost their first round match, and, because of the draw, they would end up playing all the stronger teams, which would make getting to the final extremely difficult. The coaches’ words of wisdom were meant to help them realise that they might be going home early, however, these youngsters had a simple view, which was that they’d just have to take the difficulties head on and beat the stronger teams on the way to the final. That is exactly what they did, and they went on to win an exciting final.

That kind of positive approach is how we need to tackle these P1 opponents. We don’t need the home advantage. Bring on the matches at Mansfield Park, Raeburn Place, Anniesland, and (especially) Goldenacre!

Mike Sims

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