Great Win in Borders for Reds 2s
Peebles “A” 19 – 21 Linlithgow 2s
Saturday 28 October 2017
To put this match into context, Peebles play two divisions above the Reds in the senior leagues, so this clash at Peebles between both Club’s second string teams was always going to be a tough fixture for this young Reds team.
A bus was arranged to take the seconds to this match at Peebles. For many of the young players this was their first time in the “Borders” and to play against the Borders’ brand of rugby which can be slightly more abrasive than the Reds are used to. The Manager emphasised this issue in his pre match team talk and suggested to the captain that if he won the toss of the coin we should select to play into the howling wind.
Why? It often seems when teams do this they play better as it encourages closer passing and more structure to the games, as any mistake or turnover ball is punished by a huge loss of territory.
The game started briskly with Andrew Archer and Callum Forbes carrying and taking the ball to the opposition. James Timlin and Robbie Thomson were keeping us on the front foot with clever offloads to Connall Black, Calum McKeown, Duncan McClymont and PJ Singleton. This tight play was frustrating the Peebles team who were giving away a huge number of penalties for various infringements. From this we were able to edge up the pitch into the opposition 22. From one such attack Kieran Cochrane made a great individual break but was all but decapitated with a high tackle. Kieran who had been volunteered as the kicker stepped up to take the penalty, stroked the ball nicely but the wind gusted at the last minute and it hit the post. No score and it was proving a difficult day for all.
The Reds stuck to their game plan and with assistance of Peebles and their indiscipline found their way back up the pitch. Before half time the Reds had scored two good tries one from PJ Singleton supporting James Timlin and another from Andrew Archer who broke through under the posts. Kieran Cochrane converted one. 12-0 to the Reds.
However just before half time Peebles managed to get unto the Reds line after a couple of penalties against Linlithgow. From the last play they scored a try to leave the score 12-5 at half time.
The second half started with Peebles continuing how they had left off before the half time whistle. Playing into the wind was encouraging them to play better, the Reds relaxed after their first half exertions and Peebles scored quickly again to draw the scores, 12-12.
The game was tilting in favour of Peebles but luckily for the Reds, the indiscretions of the Peebles’ players and their disagreements with the referee resulted in them getting two yellow cards. Kieran Cochrane was kicking well and slotted two more penalties to punish them and take the score to 18-12 for the Reds.
Peebles always looked more dangerous running the ball into the wind in the second half and with about 10 minutes left broke through and scored between the posts. This try was converted to leave the score 19-18 to Peebles, and the Reds’ 2s were staring defeat in the face for the first time in the season.
However this team has belief in their ability and a few minutes later Kieran Cochrane stepped up to slot a difficult penalty kick over from out wide, 21-19 to Linlithgow.
The Manager and all of the support were relieved when the final whistle sounded shortly after, with Reds emerging as winners. This Peebles team were the best we have played this season and luckily for us they seemed unable to control their indiscretions and gave away a huge number of penalties which was eventually their downfall.
Ross Tulloch; Lewis Herdman, Cammy Murrie, Russell Murdoch, Cammy Walker; James Timlin, Robbie Thomson; Hasan Gurhan Ilter, Callum Forbes, Calum McKeown; Connall Black, Duncan McClymont; PJ Singleton, Andrew Archer and Kieran Cochrane.
Subs: Sam McAllister, Stuart Young, Euan Conlon, Gregor Aitchison, Matthew Sommerville, Guy Sutherland.