Up-front Tweedsiders on scrum time to win derby

Greg Minto? scoring Kelso's first try in the second half
Greg Minto? scoring Kelso's first try in the second half



This was a game decided at scrum time and once again Kelso showed what a dominant set piece they have.

Peebles started off well and were three points ahead after only a couple of minutes with a Greg Raeburn penalty.

Kelso soon equalised, and led after 20 minutes, following two similar three-pointers from stand-off Ben Cooper.

Peebles hit back straight away when a strong burst by Connor McCann sent Dylan Mundy in at the posts. Raeburn added the extra points and took the hosts further ahead with another penalty.

This is when Kelso started to turn the screw up front.

Just before the break, they were rewarded with a penalty try, converted by Cooper, after a long passage of pressure and half-chances. Half-time score: Peebles 13 Kelso 13.

Peebles began the second half short-handed, Adam Clark having been sent to the sin bin when the referee lost patience with Peebles’ scrum offences. And they paid the price when a line-out catch and drive was taken well into the home 22 in the 46th minute. Cooper sent out a long miss pass for Gregg Minto, making his first appearance of the season, who galloped over the line.

Stuart Lowrie and Sam Hampson joined the fray for Kelso and it was a long kick and chase by the lightning-quick latter which forced Peebles to concede a five metre scrum and Stuart Lowrie was driven over for a short-range try.

Cooper converted to take Kelso 25-13 ahead.

Raeburn reduced the gap with another penalty and, as the hosts fought hard for the losing bonus point, an exciting break almost took them over in the corner, but for an outstanding defensive tackle by Hampson. As the game drew to a close, there was one further chance for Raeburn, but his penalty kick fell just short.

For Kelso, the question had to be asked as to whether this was a bonus point lost as they were close to the four tries, or was it a relief to get back to winning ways after a bad fortnight? The return of Ali Marsh and Stuart Lowrie was a bonus, but that gloss was tarnished when Donald Seed went down with a knee injury late in the game.

Peebles: D. Clancy; R. Clinch, C. Scott, D. Mundy, N. Hogarth; G. Raeburn, D. Wills; A. Clark, M. Carryer, J. Menzies, J. Swiatek, R. Harrison, C. McCann, D. Hall, W. Kearney. Subs: A. Brown, P. Stewart, K. Brown, A. Warnock, M. Anderson.

Kelso: M. Hastie; G. Millar, G. Minto, R. Minto, D. Gobby; B. Cooper, A. Tait; K. Cooney, C. Riddell, A. Marsh, D. Seed, S. Carnegie, I. Wallace, T. Wichary, M. Robertson. Subs: S. Lowrie, S. Brown, A. Common, A. Wallace, S. Hampson.