Close but no cigar for Hawick at Currie

Hawick might have come up just short away to league leaders Currie Chieftains on Saturday but they didn’t leave Edinburgh empty-handed, picking up two losing bonus points to stay within reach of rugby’s Tennent’s Premiership table.

By Darin Hutson
Monday, 8th November 2021, 7:42 pm
Updated Tuesday, 9th November 2021, 6:52 am
Hawick loosehead prop Shawn Muir scoring a late try against Currie Chieftains (Photo: Malcolm Grant)
Hawick loosehead prop Shawn Muir scoring a late try against Currie Chieftains (Photo: Malcolm Grant)

The Borderers had been hoping to blow the title race wide open by following up their 25-20 victory against the capital side on the opening day of the season back at the start of September by defying the odds, Currie not having lost since, with another win at Balerno’s Malleny Park.

Once again there were only five points in it, but this time round it went the way of their opponents.

That 29-24 defeat leaves Hawick third in the table with 34 points from 10 games, five behind second-placed Marr and six behind their hosts, having played one game more than the latter.

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Hawick flanker Calum Renwick making a break against Currie with Bailey Donaldson supporting (Photo: Malcolm Grant)

Next up for the Greens is a home game against third-bottom Glasgow Hutchesons’ Aloysians on Saturday, November 27, with kick-off at 3pm.

Hawick head coach Matty Douglas was pleased by the performance put in by his side at the weekend but disappointed not to be heading back to Mansfield Park with more than two points.

“Obviously I’m disappointed not to come away with a win,” he told Borders Rugby TV.

“I think we deserved a win. It was just inaccuracies at the end that maybe cost us a result, but credit to the players, they really stood up today and played for each other and we’ve got two points away from home.

Hawick's pack on the drive against Currie with hooker Ross Graham ready to break (Photo: Malcolm Grant)

“We’ve beaten Marr and just come up short against Currie in the last two weeks so on that front I’m really happy. It keeps us pushing forward at the right end of the table.

“There are little things to work on there and now we’ve got a two-week break and we’ll look to GHA after it.”

It was Hawick that went in front on Saturday four minutes in after Currie gifted them possession just outside their own 22 with a fumble, allowing first Andrew Mitchell and then Ronan McKean to hack it up the pitch for Jae Linton to touch down and Kirk Ford to follow up with a conversion.

A penalty got their hosts on the scoresheet, however, and Cammy Gray followed that up with a try to put them in front and they refused to relinquish that lead for the rest of the game.

Currie Chieftains halting a Hawick attack (Photo: Ian Gidney)

Rhys Davies added a second try soon after, with Gregor Hunter adding a conversion.

Hawick hit back on the half-hour mark, with a Gareth Welsh pass setting up McKean to score.

The next try, just before the interval, went Currie’s way, however, putting them 24-12 ahead at half-time. Home captain Fergus Scott staged a breakout from a scrum in his side’s half and was there to touch down at the end of that move too following a run by James McCague.

Hawick cut that 12-point deficit to five early in the second half after Ford forced his way over the line and added a conversion.

Currie Chieftains on the ball against Hawick (Photo: Ian Gidney)

Graeme Carson then hit back for the hosts with an unconverted try to extend their lead again, but Hawick refused to give up, with Shawn Muir adding their final try of the game to leave Currie hanging on at the end.