Attack is the best line of defence for six-try Souters

Angus Duckett attempts to hold off the Kelso defence
Angus Duckett attempts to hold off the Kelso defence

Six well-taken tries were ample reward for a superb attacking display, particularly in the second period, as Selkirk cruised to a 40-6 victory over Kelso last weekend.

After the recent deluge, it was a surprise that the game was played at all, but Poynder Park looked a green oasis and was certainly very playable.

A second-half demolition job by Selkirk, whose support play and the ability to prevent Kelso from establishing phases of play due to some crunching tackles, sealed a convincing win in the Border Cup encounter, much to the delight of full back Fraser Harkness.

“Potentially we still have a league promotion to play for, so it was really important for us to go over to Kelso and get ourselves back up and running again.

“We really took the game by the scruff of the neck in the second half and started to open up in attack. Some of the youngsters were outstanding and it turned into a really good game.”

From the outset, Selkirk looked the more likely side with their ambition to move the ball around, and at pace. The only phase of the game where they could be disappointed was in the scrums, where Kelso, as they have been all season, were on top in any scrum which did not result in a penalty or a free kick.

Kelso’s line-out failed to function, thanks to the tireless Ricky Fluhler and Matt Kissick. Kelso opened the scoring with a penalty by Matt Douglas after three minutes, but that was cancelled out by a Gavin Craig try after a good advantage played by referee, Cammy Rudkin.

Josh Welsh missed the conversion, but slotted his next kick when Kelso captain, Chris Riddell, was yellow-carded after not allowing Mikey Davies to run following a free kick.

Douglas closed the gap with another penalty, but just on half-time, relentless Selkirk pressure allowed Angus Duckett to crash over for a try after centre, Ross Nixon, made the break deep into the Kelso 22.

Just into the second half, Fraser Harkness was called back after a forward pass, but that merely marginally delayed the next Selkirk score when Welsh slotted another penalty.

Good support play led to Scott Hendrie scoring a fine team try.

Welsh added the extras, but he failed with his next conversion attempt, following Harkness’ try which came after a series of less than heroic tackling by Kelso, but which produced a bonus point for the Souters.

As the game reached its close, Selkirk scored another two tries. Firstly, through Ewan McDougall, who supported well after yet another tapped penalty and a second for Hendrie who just happened to be in the right place at the right time. Welsh converted the first of these tries.

This was a resounding victory by for the visitors, who look as if they are well set for the second part of the season. Selkirk’s next game is on Saturday, January 11, when they take on Hawick in the RBS Borders Cup at Mansfield Park.