It’s Silver Saturday this weekend at BT Murrayfield – but it could be a golden day for Borders club rugby.
Melrose won the BT Premiership title this season and are bidding for a memorable double – which taking custody of the BT Scottish Cup would ensure.
The champions – and cup holders – face Stirling County in the final, kicking off at 4.30pm.
It should be a thoroughly appetising game, with the Greenyards men able to draw on the experience of previous visits to the national stadium, against a side making its first appearance on the Murrayfield stage.
Earlier on Saturday, which features a day-long feast of rugby, culminating in the 1872 Cup match between Edinburgh and Glasgow, Hawick Harlequins take on Carrick at 12.05pm in the final of the BT National Shield.
Quins comfortably won the East District League One this year and are contemplating a step upstairs to the BT National league structure.
Melrose head coach Rob Chrystie said: “The bottom line is we’ve got to perform. We need to put in a really good performance to give us any chance of winning. If we do that, we’ll not be far away.”
He added: “To go up to BT Murrayfield and play on the main pitch is always something you want to do as a young lad, and there was a bit of excitement among the squad at training this week. Hopefully, we’ll hit the ground running against Stirling.”
Aware of County’s big win – 51-19 – over Hawick in the semi-final, Melrose know their Premiership compatriots will be formidable opposition, while County have had a lot longer than Melrose to focus exclusively on this one.
“They’ll be relishing the opportunity to get there and trying to get up those stairs, as we will be,” he said. “Like any final, it’s a one-off game. It’s a game of rugby and the idea is you get over the line at the end of the day. It’s a really exciting day to go up to Murrayfield, not just for the rugby club but for the whole town and the area. Hopefully, we will get a big following up there.”