Before The Great War
The 1901-02 season surpassed previous years and the club only lost 4 games out of 19. The best result was a 16 point win over The Edinburgh Institution. These years were again dominated by a strong pack of forwards. J McGregor, H M Johnstone and G M Beaton were outstanding and became know as the ‘three musketeers’ because of their adventurous play.
In 1905-06 victories against Heriot’s and Hawick were recorded but these eclipsed by the win against Gala 5-3 as they were the reigning Border League Champions.
This was followed by several years of more losses than wins despite some memorable games against Edinburgh Academicals. Fortunes changed as a new generation of school leavers joined the club.
In 1911 the team had a very successful season coming sixth in the Championship.They defeated Glasgow High School FP 24-0, Edinburgh Academicals 8-5 and gave Hawick their first defeat of the season 18-8.
The club captain of this team was Finlay Kennedy and he was selected along with G M Beaton, J R Black and J H Laing for the Edinburgh team to play in the inter city matches. This was the biggest representation the Club had achieved to this date.
Season 1912-13 proved to be almost as successful. Ivan Tait, A J Elphinstone A D Lambert and J D Lunan all came into the team while A McNab, still at school, also played in several games. The school XV that year had a remarkable record of winning 15 out of 18 games played, with only one defeat and scoring 415 points and 23 against.
The club made it to the Melrose seven a side final for the first time only to be beaten to Hawick 14-0.
In 1913 -14 the club consolidated its position in the Championship and scored over 200 points. Most of these were thanks to the attacking ability of A J Elphinstone who helped his wing Ivan Tait to score a remarkable 40 tries in the season. He was descibed at the time as ‘our fastest wing since 1889’ and he later became Scottish 100 yards Champion. The side was still dominated by Finlay Kennedy and it surprised many that he did not get chosen for the Scotland XV. However, it transpired that one of the selection committee was said to declare ‘he walks like a lassie!’
Hopes were high that the Club was now to enter its most successful era but the next season the outbreak of The Great War brought the suspension of all Club rugby activities.
1st XV results before The Great War