Hawick win bad-tempered friendly with Selkirk

Harris McDonnell gets the ball away for Selkirk 'A' (picture by Grant Kinghorn)Harris McDonnell gets the ball away for Selkirk 'A' (picture by Grant Kinghorn)
Harris McDonnell gets the ball away for Selkirk 'A' (picture by Grant Kinghorn)
Selkirk ‘A’ 7, Hawick Force 24

From time to time, fireworks lit up the night sky above Selkirk’s cricket ground on Friday night – with things proving equally explosive on the adjoining Philiphaugh rugby pitch, where Selkirk ‘A’ were hosting Hawick Force in a friendly fixture.

Tempers boiled over on several occasions during the match, leading to referee Cammy Forrest not only speaking to both captains but to both coaches as well.

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If nothing else, this intensity showed the high commitment both sets of players invested in the contest, which produced exciting passages of end-to-end play, despite the greasy underfoot conditions and persistent rain.

The experience of Hawick Force’s pack, allied to the visitors’ strong-running threequarter line, was always going to pose problems for the young Selkirk ‘A’ side. To their credit, the home players rose to the challenge magnificently.

Hawick’s towering South African centre, Wiaan Griebenow, proved a hot handful throughout the night, so it was no surprise when he powered his way over for tries in the 17th and 39th minutes.

The visitors’ other first half points came from an Aaron Redpath try, while Bailey Donaldson added two conversions to put Hawick 19-0 ahead at the interval.

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Selkirk cut the deficit early in the second period when wing Nathaniel Armstrong gathered a spilled ball inside his own 10-metre line, pinned his ears back and raced clear to touch down between the posts. Rory Hamilton converted.

A try by Hawick replacement Mully Bannerman, midway through the half, completed the night’s scoring.

Selkirk were well served by the tireless work of Robert Cook and Jamie Turnbull in the loose, while Andrew Renwick, Derry Alexander and Jack Houston provided added heft. Special mention, too, went home scrum-half Harris McDonnell, parachuted into the number nine jersey at the last minute.

The home side’s only casualty of the night was centre Harry Aynsley, who required three stitches in a head cut but should be fit for this weekend’s game against Edinburgh Accies 2nds.

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Selkirk ‘A’ – K. Monks, N. Armstrong, L. Martin, H. Aynsley, M. Rutter, R. Hamilton, H. McDonnell, M. Waldron, M. Francis, M. Haldane, A. Renwick, D. Alexander, L. Cassidy, J. Turnbull, R. Cook. Replacements: M. Brass, K. Thomson, R. Reilly, A. Davidson, M. Mackay, R. Purves, J. Houston.

Hawick Force – A. Redpath, R. McKean, W. Griebenow, G. Huggan, R. Hamilton, B. Donaldson, D. Lightfoot, N. Murray, R. Hartdegan, R. Macleod, J. Grant, L. Martin, P. Drysdale, B. McNeil, M. Renwick. Replacements: C. Renwick, R. Toogood, B. McNeil, M. Parker, K. Ford, M. Bannerman.

Referee – Cammy Forrest (Biggar).

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