Capital sides continue to gain in Borders 7s

Hawick's Bruce McNeil calls for the ball against Kelso (picture by Bill McBurnie).
Hawick's Bruce McNeil calls for the ball against Kelso (picture by Bill McBurnie).
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Edinburgh clubs turned on the quality yet again on the Borders Sevens circuit to take a cup out of the region for the

second time in three weeks, as Boroughmuir lifted the BSW Timber Group Hawick tournament on Saturday at Mansfield

Park, with a 26-5 win over Edinburgh Accies in the final.

And the trend continued on Sunday when Watsonians prevented Boroughmuir doing a weekend ‘double’ by defeating them in the Berwick Sevens final on Sunday at Scremerston.

It was small consolation to the local sides on Saturday that Boroughmuir are coached by former Scotland Sevens and Melrose star, Graham Shiel, and controlled on the field by another ex-Greenyards favourite, Tom Wilson, while Richard Mill, another former Melrose player, played a key role for Accies.

Accies, who won at the Gala tournament and lost in the final at Melrose, played one tie more than their opponents, who received a bye when Hamilton withdrew, but were outplayed in the last match, which was an outstanding finale.

“The Edinburgh teams are buying into it (the sevens),” Wilson said. “It adds to the tournaments and a few of the Borders

teams still have games going on, It was a great for us. We have been building for four or five weeks now, as we finished the XVs season quite early and we wanted to target the Kings of the Sevens.

“The squad did really well and we are chuffed with our performances. Yes, getting the bye in the first round made a difference and, in the final, you could see we were a bit fresher.”

Wilson, the player of the tournament, joined Shiel and the players in the celebrations.

“It was a great day for us, albeit we played a tie less, but the three games we did play were really good,” Shiel said. “We overcame Watsonians (in extra time) and Hawick and then Accies, who have proved this season they are a great seven.

“I hope that is a good omen for us and, after the season finished on March 15, we decided to get boys in and we are

lucky we are able to come down to all of the sevens.” So their season remains on course.

Boroughmuir led 14-0 at the interval and went on to win the cup for the first time since 1987.

Greg Cannie scored two tries and Jack Webster and Jack Hamilton one each, before Robbie Chalmers scored a consolation try for Accies.

In the first of the semi-finals, Boroughmuir swept past the hosts, who had been made to fight by a President’s 7 in round two, while Accies again showed to be a main sevens threat as they outplayed Heriot’s in the other semi.

Holders and the Ned Haig Kings of the Sevens winners, Watsonians, crashed out to an extra-time try by Boroughmuir, while three sides, Gala, Hamilton and Peebles all withdrew because of league commitments, which is an issue that has to be addressed in the future.

Borders clubs again failed to impress and others did not field their strongest sides. But sevens convener John Thorburn said: “A great day, but when last did we have 22 deg (temperature) on Hawick Sevens Saturday?” Results:

First round: Langholm 0, Watsonians 63; Boroughmuir wo, Hamilton pulled out; Kelso 5, Hawick 41; Berwick 12, President’s 7 12; Selkirk 5, Melrose 41; Heriot’s wo, Peebles pulled out; Glasgow Hawks 28, Hawick Force 12; Edinburgh Accies 38, Jed-Forest 0.

Second round: Watsonians 33, Boroughmuir 28 (after extra time); Hawick 25, President’s 7 21; Melrose 10, Heriot’s 29; Glasgow Hawks 7, Edinburgh Accies 33.

Semi-finals: Boroughmuir 35, Hawick 7; Heriot’s 5, Edinburgh Accies 24.

Final: Boroughmuir 26, Edinburgh Accies 5.