3rd XV Match Report vs Forrester 2nd XV
There’s no easy way to say this but yesterday was a difficult day for the Club on many levels. Our 1st and 2nd XVs travelled through to Clarkston with weakened squads and suffered heavily.
Meanwhile back at Inverleith, on a quite glorious afternoon, we served up some wonderfully flowing rugby to the faithful. The truth is, though, that the result was meaningless, for, without any front row players, the game was forfeited before the first ball was kicked!
As coaches, and life long enthusiasts of the game, we had two choices. Either start with 15 and not play our full squad (one of whom had travelled down from Dundee) or forfeit the match from the off. We chose the latter, for, despite the wish from the Scottish Rugby Union to see traditional front row play kept alive, we prefer to see lads playing. And did they play!!
Liam Kelly, friend of Cameron Pryde, arrived for an afternoon stroll … seven tries later, I had to take the big fella off. What a beast of a lad, and, together with Joe Grant, Cameron himself and Ben Black, he formed the core of a formidable pack of marauding forwards. Our guests found it tough but credit to them, they never gave up. It appeared that their stand-off carried the can for the result and could be seen in the clubhouse afterwards sporting a lovely dress for his performance … in fairness, he accepted the dubious plaudit in good grace. I love it!
Gary Callander, Kelso and former Scottish Captain, once said that, ‘no other Club in Scotland combines interplay between backs and forwards better than Stewart’s Melville’. At times yesterday our rugby was quite sublime, with Rory Anderson at scrum half and the ageless Richard Borthwick calling the shots at stand off.
But the gem of the afternoon for me had to be Euan Stewart, who pitched up early, shook my hand and said that, ‘he hadn’t played for a couple of years – but just give me the ball … I’ll finish !’ I liked his confidence. Threw him on for the second half … two tries later, he was true to his word. Turns out Euan was the school 100 metres Champion with a PB of 11.1 secs! Not since the days of that great thoroughbred, John Mackenzie, have I seen such raw pace in Stew Mel colours. Euan could play a bit, too.
Surely this is what it’s all about – but let’s not dwell on the laws of the game, and rather take great heart that 19 lads pitched up, and, through that, will hopefully encourage others to support the Club going forward. The final score was 64-12 in our favour.
Special thanks to our referee Alistair Pinkerton, who, with much on his plate, arrived to give everyone a game. Many thanks Alistair. Also to Denise and her team in the clubhouse who served up the scran for our guests – great effort, girls!
So let’s see what next week brings. To all members of the Club: ‘KBO!’, to quote Sir Winston Churchill.
Fin, Jim, Simon and Richard (winners of the Goldenacre, Paisley, Leith, Dunfermline and Murrayfield Sevens circa 1974 … yes, 1974!)