Chronicle of Borders’ rise in rugby world

Borders Rugby . Gary Armstrong.'Photo Robert Perry The Scotsman
Borders Rugby . Gary Armstrong.'Photo Robert Perry The Scotsman

BORDERS rugby legends Gary Armstrong and John Rutherford will join well-known journalist Neil Drysdale in conversation at the Heart of Hawick next month to launch his book chronicling Borders rugby, writes Kenny Paterson.

In Southern Comfort: The Story of Borders Rugby, Drysdale examines how the Borders became one of the most famous rugby heartlands and the impact the region has had on the game.

John Rutherford. Playing for Selkirk RFC 1985/86.

John Rutherford. Playing for Selkirk RFC 1985/86.

The book includes interviews with some of the Borders’ most talented players and coaches, such as Jim Telfer, Rutherford, Roy Laidlaw, Jim Renwick, Craig Chalmers, Colin Deans, Doddie Weir and current Scotland full back, Chris Paterson. It also has a foreword from one of the world’s greatest wingers David Campese, who faced the South of Scotland while playing for Australia.

A reporter since the late 1980s, Aberdeen-based Drysdale has covered many of sport’s biggest events, and has previously released work on Rangers manager Walter Smith, Scottish motor racing star Dario Franchitti as well as Freuchie Cricket Club’s march to Lords in 1985. He writes for the Herald.

Proceeds from the book launch and his conversation with Rutherford and Armstrong on October 10 – the day before the resurrected South team take on the Barbarians in Hawick – will go to the Bill McLaren Foundation.

The event starts at 7.30pm and tickets, £5, are available by phoning 01450 360688, at www.thebooth.co.uk or in person from the Heart of Hawick.