New Selkirk captain Scott McClymont relishing prospect of extra Borders derbies next rugby season
The new campaign kicks off on Saturday, September 2, and, following Kelso’s promotion from Tennent’s National League Division 1, it brings with it two extra derbies to add to the four the Souters have been playing against Hawick and Jed-Forest of late.
That extra portion of regional rivalry is something McClymont, taking over from last season’s co-captains, Aaron McColm and Luke Pettie, is looking forward to, saying: “It’s a good thing having another Borders team in the league. It makes it better.
“The more Borders teams there are in the premiership the better it is for rugby here.”
The 28-year-old isn’t expecting Kelso to find it difficult to adjust to Scottish club rugby’s top tier, reckoning that there’s not as much of a difference in standards as there used to be between the premiership and the national leagues following the arrival of the semi-professional Fosroc Super6 Championship, as it was then, in 2019.
“It made a big difference Super6 coming in. It’s quite level now,” he said.
“There used to be a huge gap between the premiership and National 1 and the other leagues, whereas now, though the premiership's still tougher, there’s not the gulf there was.
“A lot of players in National 1 probably could play at a higher level but they’re sticking to their local clubs, which is a good thing, to be fair.”
McClymont, of Selkirk, says he’s delighted to be taking on skippering duties a decade into his senior playing career at Philiphaugh, telling us: “When you start playing for Selkirk, you always want to play for the firsts and then you want to end up captain and now I have. It’s good.
“There are plenty of other leaders at Selkirk too, like Aaron, Luke and Ross Nixon, so it’s not just all on me. It’s going to be handy having those boys round about me.”
A farmer by trade, he says he’s well aware he’s following in some big footsteps and hopes to do the captain’s arm-band he’s inherited justice over the coming months, singling out Ewan McDougall, now retired from playing, as a particular inspiration.
“Ewan probably stands out as the best captain I can remember,” he said. “It wasn’t just what he said, it was his actions on the pitch too, and he could play in a lot of positions as well.”
Selkirk begin next season at home to Edinburgh’s Currie Chieftains on September 2, with kick-off at 3pm, and their first derby follows on Saturday, September 16, also at 3pm, hosting Jed.
In the meantime, they play a home friendly against Biggar on Saturday, August 26, kicking off at 2pm.