Scrum-half Hector Patterson looking to make a pass during Southern Knights' 54-19 loss away to Ayrshire Bulls on Saturday (Photo: George McMillan)Scrum-half Hector Patterson looking to make a pass during Southern Knights' 54-19 loss away to Ayrshire Bulls on Saturday (Photo: George McMillan)
Scrum-half Hector Patterson looking to make a pass during Southern Knights' 54-19 loss away to Ayrshire Bulls on Saturday (Photo: George McMillan)

Rugby’s Southern ​Knights hoping for first win versus Heriot’s since 2022 this coming weekend

Rugby’s ​Southern Knights are going back to basics as they target their first win against Heriot’s for a year and a half this coming Saturday.

The Borderers haven’t got the better of the Edinburgh outfit since edging them out 27-20 in the capital in October 2022 in the Fosroc Super Series Championship, having lost 36-22 last April and 38-34 in September, both away, as well as drawing 21-21 in November at home at Melrose’s Greenyards.

They’re now setting their sights on ending that winless streak at the capital’s Goldenacre playing fields this weekend but to have any chance of doing that, according to attack coach Scott Wight, they’ll have to cut out the unforced errors that have led to three losses in four games so far this Fosroc Super Series Sprint season, the last of them by 54-19 away to Ayrshire Bulls on Saturday.

“Heriot’s are a good team,” said the 38-year-old “We went up there in pre-season and we really struggled against them, but we’ve definitely improved since then.

“It’s a game we’re looking forward to – we look forward to every week – but we know that every game’s going to be hard for us.

“The important thing for us – and I know it sounds so simple – is that we’ve got to do the basics better.

“If we’re going to compete against these teams, we can’t afford to make unforced errors like we did at the weekend in Ayr, so we’ll be looking at that to make sure we’re in the best possible place ahead of Saturday.”

Looking back over Saturday’s loss at Millbrae in Ayr, Wight added: “We knew it was going to be tough.

“We put a big focus on discipline and our kicking game the week before, and I thought our kicking game and kick-chase actually went quite well, but our discipline wasn’t great unfortunately.

“We gave away far too many penalties and made two or three errors that gave them soft tries.

“That made it really difficult for us as they base themselves around kicking for corners and their set-piece, and they love going from set-piece to set-piece and they’re really good at it.

“They play a simple brand of rugby and they’ve got a squad that allow them to do that and they’ve got a lot of firepower.

“It’s going to take a good team to beat them this year in the sprint series.”

Wight was heartened to see his side fight back from being 28-7 down at half-time and 40-7 behind later on to get within reach of a four-try bonus point, though, saying: “We scored three tries and were chasing a fourth but we didn’t quite get it.

“If I’m being brutally honest, getting a bonus point over there would have been a good result for us, given what they’ve done to other teams in the league so far.

“Following our performance against Watsonians, we definitely stepped up but we’re obviously still some distance behind Bulls with the squad that they’ve got.”

Loosehead prop Jack Dobie, blindside flanker Allan Ferrie and right-winger Finn Douglas scored Knights’ tries at Alloway, two of them converted by fly-half Callum Grieve.

Richie Simpson and Jamie Shedden touched down at the double for their hosts, along with Alex McGuire, Blair Macpherson, Bobby Beattie and James Malcolm, with Simpson adding five conversions and David McCartney another two.

Kick-off at Goldenacre on Saturday is at 3pm.