’Rose have to wait another week for glory

Melrose v Aberdeen. Graeme Dodds
Melrose v Aberdeen. Graeme Dodds

Melrose 43

Aberdeen Grammar School FP 34

PREMIER A

ATHOLL INNES reports from The Greenyards

IT is still game on as Melrose set up an end-of-season decider in their quest for their second title in a row.

The championship will go down to the wire as Melrose head for Boroughmuir in April and veteran centre Cammie Murray hopes to end his playing career on a high.

“I have had a good career, but my body tells me that I have to hang up my boots. That was my last game at The Greenyards and I do hope to finish off at Boroughmuir,” he said.

“I plan to still be around and my boys enjoy coming here on a Saturday.

“I may have a year off first. I did think of coming back next season and that would have been my 20th.

“I had a long-term calf injury and had to come off, and so I decided that it was time to give up.

“I was pleased to play a final game here at The Greenyards.”

Murray, who played two seasons at Melrose before a shoulder injury forced him to quit the game, made a return and was instrumental in helping his side to a win over Aberdeen.

“It was not easy,” said skipper Graeme Dodds. “We were comfortable and then lost our way after the break. But the most important thing was that we got five points and the title is still in our hands.”

Melrose were not too convincing and lost too many turnovers after the interval, and from leading 34-14, they were pulled back to 34-31, before super sub Scott Wight, of Glasgow Warriors, banged over two massive kicks to ease the pressure.

It looked comfortable at the interval as Melrose rained in the touchdowns.

Andrew Skeen, who finished with 22 points, through a try, four conversions, two penalties and a drop goal, cruised in for a score.

Tries were added by Bruce Colvine, Allan Dodds and Bruce Dick, but Aberdeen stayed in the hunt with scores from Tony McGinness and Fraser Lyle.

The visitors surged ahead 5-4 in the try count after the interval with a Sam Bingham double and one from Steve Aitken, with Alex Hagart adding the goal points.

But Wight and Skeen eased the worries ahead of the visit to Boroughmuir on Friday, April 6, with the Stirling visit to Dundee 24 hours later.

However, questions must be asked why the games should not kick off at the same time on the same day.

Melrose: F. Thomson; A. Dodds, B. Dick, C. Murray, N. McGrath; A. Skeen, B. Colvine; N. Little, R. Ferguson, N. Beavon, C. Eccles, R. Miller, R. Ovens, G. Dodds, G. Runciman. Subs: G. Holborn, C. Keen, S. Wight, S. McCormick, J. Helps.