JED-FOREST claimed their Kings of the Sevens title on Saturday with yet another solid performance at the penultimate event in the series.
But in the final, their failure to produce the form shown in the earlier rounds meant Edinburgh outfit Watsonians lifted the trophy with a convincing 47-19 victory, leaving players and coaches feeling frustrated to say the least.
Jed coach Kevin Amos, who has a wealth of sevens experience behind him, believes the problem is psychological.
He told TheSouthern: “I don’t know what it is with the finals, but we’re just not turning up. We’re getting there and thinking the job is done when it’s not.
“Up until the final we looked by far the best team on show and then it just all fell apart.
“It’s something that myself, Darren (Cunningham) and Kevin (Barrie) will all be looking at with the players next week before our own tournament.”
Nevertheless, the Riverside outfit were clearly delighted to have secured the Kings title.
Wins over Edinburgh Accies, Heriot’s and hosts Selkirk saw to it that Jed were on target for their goal anyway, but the exit of Melrose, following their quarter-final tie against Kelso, meant Amos’ men could not be caught in the series.
Melrose’s Fraser Thomson was one of the first to congratulate the Riverside outfit when he posted on social media site Twitter just minutes after the final whistle: “Congratulations to Jed, the most consistent team on the circuit this year.”
The final proved one step too far for Jed.
Watsonians started on the attack and Scott McKean would have been through had it not been for some staunch Jed defending. It was only a matter of time, however, and seconds later Rory Steele blasted through for the opener.
Mike Ker was next on the score sheet when he ran in at the corner and his excellent conversion put Watsonians 12-0 up. The lead was stretched further in the ensuing minutes when Tom Hart ran in a try, converted by Ker.
Jed eventually got points on the board just before the break when some patient play saw them up into the Watsonians half before a decisive break from Lewis Young ended in a try between the posts which Iain Chisholm converted.
Normal service resumed for the city side after the restart with Paulie Tuala (2) and Scott McKean going over, all converted by Ker, increasing the margin.
David Gobby managed to stem the flow with a try converted by Chisholm, but Watsonians quickly got back into their rhythm and added another from Jack Ferguson.
Lewis Young grabbed another try for Jed in the closing stages but it was too little too late and Watsonians picked up their first Selkirk Sevens winners medals.
’Sonians captain Mike Ker told us: “It was the first time we had won at Kelso last week and now we have won at Selkirk for the first time so we are really pleased. The boys have been training hard and now it is bearing fruit so we are delighted.
“It would be good to get a few tournaments under our belts before coming on to the Borders circuit as we were a bit rusty going into the earlier rounds.
That is something we will be looking at next season when we will be looking to compete again. We have a young team, so hopefully we can come back next year and do even better.
“Congratulations to Jed, they’ve been the most consistent team throughout and thoroughly deserve their title.”
Watsonians: M. Rennie, T. Hart, P. Tuala, J. Ferguson, M. Ker, R. Steele, S. McKean, D. Johnson, B. Walls, C. Smith.
Jed-Forest: D. Gillespie, M. Weekly, G. Taylor, R. Goodfellow, I. Chisholm, R. Hogg, L. Young, G. Young, C. Gillon, D. Gobby.