Peebles put paid to leaders' perfect winning sequence

Biggar 7

Peebles, in their red and white stripes, ended Biggar's perfect winning record with a 7-10 win (picture by Nigel Pacey)
Peebles, in their red and white stripes, ended Biggar's perfect winning record with a 7-10 win (picture by Nigel Pacey)

Peebles 10

Any record has to be broken at some point.

And, while Biggar should in theory have been able to extend their winning run to 11, Peebles, as befits local derby opposition, were always going to provide a very stern challenge to the table-toppers.

Peebles eventually won Saturday’s game, courtesy of a penalty try and a penalty to a converted try.

This equated to as big a boost for the Borders side as it was a disappointment for all at Hartree Mill.

Peebles, who had three players deposited in the sin bin, rarely threatened the Biggar line.

Biggar made several cutting line breaks and crossed the Peebles’ line twice – one try being disallowed – and came close on at least another three occasions.

However, the Gytes men were a better organised unit than Biggar have faced recently.

With Peebles’ forwards largely dictating play in the set piece, this put real pressure on the hosts, which inevitably cut their attacking options down and limited their attacking threat.

Peebles, as anticipated, came out of the traps at full pace and Biggar, on the back foot and in defensive mode from the start, conceded a couple of penalties, which were missed.

Peebles number eight Richard Harrison was shown a yellow card after a reckless shoulder charge as Biggar attacked.

In virtually the next attacking move, referee Sam O’Neill brandished his yellow card again, this time to Harrison’s brother Jack, the Peebles scrum half, who’d provided a withering assessment on the official’s decision making.

Biggar had to take advantage of the disparity in numbers and Donald Voas scored a try after a fine move, with Conor Lavery adding the conversion to make the score 7-0.

In the second half, Peebles then lost their third player to the sin bin, for a neck roll.

A try by Biggar winger Rowan Stewart was chalked off for a forward pass, while order had to be restored after a brawl stemming from a tackle on Donald Voas by Jack Harrison.

Biggar’s Jamie Orr was later sin-binned following a Peebles scrum penalty, while the ensuing moves resulted in a penalty try for Peebles, tying the score at 7-7 with barely 10 minutes left.

There seemed a certain inevitability about the outcome and Peebles were awarded another scrum penalty, from which Greg Raeburn stepped up to kick the winning points.