RBS NATIONAL DIVISION
LAING SPEIRS reports from Poynder Park
THE holder of the winning ticket in the half-time 50/50 draw at Poynder Park must have felt that Kelso had suffered enough when he handed his substantial prize back as a donation to the club.
It went some way to help soften the Tweedsiders’ pain after they had endured a torrid afternoon, conceding seven tries and a further 16 points to the accurate boot of Brian Walls, the visitors’ scrum half.
Kelso never found the cohesion, accuracy and, most importantly, the pace that would have kept them in the game. A strangely colourless threequarter line tended to bunch up, leaving space which Watsonians cheerfully accepted as an invitation to cut loose.
Flashes of enterprise came from the home forwards, but they were facing a sturdy pack which was able to control ball supply for most of the game, with the exception of a 10-minute spell at the start of the second half.
Failure to make any impression at this point cost the hosts dear, and the longer the game went on, the more the visitors were in control. They ended up looking as though promotion was very much on their minds, with their seventh win in eight games – despite suffering their share of the yellow cards handed out by the exchange referee.
Kelso, too, saw key men banished throughout the game, and ended up by losing Will Massey to a red card towards the end.
It wasn’t the most exciting of games, with Watonians’ superiority clear from the second minute, the first having gone Kelso’s way by virtue of a Murray Hastie penalty.
The impressive visiting fullback Rory Steele raced in for a couple of tries as Watsonians showed their class, and Scott McKean and Dom Dunnett put another brace on the board.
Kelso were struggling at an interval score of 3-32, and their brave attempt to halt the damage lasted for only a brief period before the game ended with what must be a unique feature, a hat-trick of tries by a replacement, Euan Miller.
Walls continued the punishment with his last two conversions, making five in all, plus two penalties, but it was a sad day for a Kelso side that looked badly out of sorts.
Kelso: A. Haig; J. Pick, R. Minto, A. Alexander, G. Minto; M. Hastie, A. Tait; K. Cooney, C. Riddell, S. Lowrie, I. Wallace, D. Seed. M. Robertson, E. Ford, D. Gillespie. Subs: P. Grahamslaw, A. Wallace, J. Stewart, F. Ralson, W. Massey.