Club History

Seven-a-sides

The Stewart’s F.P. Football Club did not take part regularly in seven a side tournaments until after the First World War. Nonetheless, the club had contested two finals, the first at Melrose in 1913 when Hawick were the winners and the second at Gala in 1914 when the host club were successful.

In 1920 the club had its first ever success at Melrose and the Edinburgh Infirmary Charity tournament at Inverleith. The Inverleith tournament was won again in 1928 and 1930 but the only other successes between the wars were at Jedforest in 1934 and Hawick in 1937.

It was after the war that the club started to gain a reputation in the ‘art’ of playing sevens. In the ‘forties’ the club was served well by an impressive trio of forwards. On one occasion when Craig, Koren and Govan took the field a local supporter at Jedforest was heard to shout “Man, they’re high buggers, they Stewart’s!” These forwards secured good possession and the backs such as Anderson, Foubister, Tait, Baird and Bennett had plenty of opportunities to show their skills. C Ross was an accomplished sevens centre and A Lowes a wide ranging forward both of whom figured in winning teams, the most notable year being 1948 when Murrayfield, Jedforest and Langholm Tournaments were won.

In the ‘Fifties’ the Club was no less successful – winning several tournaments including Melrose in 1956. A new half back pairing of Sharp and Robertson were as capable at sevens as their predecessors and Weatherstone and Ireland were strong runners out wide. The forward trio of J C M Sharp, Relph and Pryde lacked the physique of previous sevens forwards but had those particular skills needed in the abbreviated game. Clark Sharp’s quick wittedness was a feature of their play, never better shown than on an occasion when, waiting to catch a high ball with no support near him and two of the opposition about to envelop him, he calmly headed the ball into touch!

In 1959 Murrayfield, Hawick were won with Sinclair now in the centre and John Douglas in the forwards. From 1957 to 1965 the club figured in the final at Murrayfield and for every year bar one they were winners on six occasions. Ironically, it was the year that the club was invited to the Twickenham sevens. They played exceptionally well and only lost to the brilliant London Scottish team. The teams in the ‘Sixties’ included Hinshelwood and Forsyth as three quarters with J Miller at scrum half and Cartwright at hooker.

By 1973, the club had played in 50 sevens finals and had won on 26 occasions. Click here for the full record.