Hopes high for Gala’s new round-robin format

Five Star Taxis Gala 7s draw are, from left, Gordon Keddie, Shiela Marshall, Kaye Niven and George Marshall.
Five Star Taxis Gala 7s draw are, from left, Gordon Keddie, Shiela Marshall, Kaye Niven and George Marshall.

AN innovative structure shake-up will see next month’s Five Star Taxis Gala Sevens final played out under the Netherdale floodlights.

As well as changing the starting time of the 121st staging of the tournament to 4.30pm, the Maroons have also decided to cut the number of participating teams from 16 to 12 and to play the tournament in a round-robin format, guaranteeing everyone at least two games.

Club representatives and guests gathered at the venue on Sunday to witness the draw for the event and to welcome on board new sponsors Five Star Taxis.

Club events manager Gordon Keddie told TheSouthern: “As a club we felt that our sevens was dying on its feet so we put our heads together to come up with something different.

“If it doesn’t work then so be it, but we will have tried it. All the teams that have been invited are really enthusiastic about it and are looking forward to taking part.”

The draw was made by Kaye Niven, Five Star Taxis, and Shiela Marshall, wife of Gala RFC president George.

Draw for the 121st Gala Sevens which takes place on Saturday, April 7: Pool One: Co-Operatives, Hawick, Jed-Forest. Pool Two: Gala, Langholm, Peebles. Pool Three: Selkirk, Edinburgh Accies, Kelso. Pool Four: Melrose, Watsonians, Heriot’s.