The quarter-final exit of Melrose at the Selkirk Sevens on Saturday meant Gala only had to win their corresponding tie to become the 2015 Kings of the Sevens.
This they duly did with all the flair they have shown in the abbreviated game since winning their own tournament on the first weekend in April, allowing the Maroons to lift their first Kings title for 11 years.
It wasn’t all sunshine and smiles for George Graham’s men, however, as, after fighting their way all the way through to the final, they were brought down by a Jed-Forest outfit eager to take their first tournament win of the season.
“It was disappointing for the whole team not to win the tournament,” said the Gala skipper.
“We came here to play good rugby sevens and we came to win, but today we were beaten by a better Jed side.”
On the flip side, Jed captain Gregor Young was only too delighted to lift the trophy on behalf of his team.
“We felt like the pressure was off a bit after Gala had won the Kings title,” he told The Southern.
“We have been playing well all the way through and today everything just clicked into place.”
Having already disposed of the Kings challengers in the previous round, Jed were clinical in their 21-10 victory over their hosts in the first semi-final tie. The pace of the Young brothers outstripped the home defence time and time again. Both Lewis and Gregor ran in fine solo tries in the opening half, with the latter running the length of the pitch to score early in the second, Lewis converting all three.
Things did pick up for the Souters. Ewan McDougall ran in at the corner following a good break by Davies, before Ross Nixon touched down with a fine solo try, but time had run out and Selkirk made their exit, having showed plenty of promise in the earlier rounds.
The second semi-final between Gala and Hawick was equally one-sided. Tries from Stevie Cairns, Graeme Speirs and George Graham took the scoreline to 21-7 at half-time, youngster Darcie Graham –who had showed up well for the Greens all day – having touched down earlier in the tie.
Hawick closed the gap after the restart when Grant Huggan ran in to score, but Operation Rout continued when James Parker, Gavin Young and Cairns again all dotted down before the final whistle.
In a repeat of the Netherdale final at the start of the series, Gala came up against a Jed-Forest side still hungry for their first tournament win.
Still looking to crown their championship-winning day with an overall victory, however, it was the Maroons who got in for the first score when the dynamic Graham broke through the Jed defence. The Riverside men bounced back and put in some good work in the Gala 22, stretching the Maroons to their limit before a quick change of direction sent Robbie Shirra-Gibb in for the touchdown, which Gregor Young converted to put his side ahead.
Just before the break, Gala regained their lead when Craig Robertson carved out a path to the Jed line, with Craig Dods’ conversion giving his team a 12-7 lead at the halfway stage.
After the restart, Jed came back with a try from Lewis Young, converted by Gregor, but the joy was short-lived when they lost Stephen Ainslie to the sin bin.
An exceptional effort after a long hard afternoon at Philiphaugh saw the Royal Blues protect their narrow lead and it was with much jubilation that they greeted the final whistle.