Wee Reds P5 Tournament Report
Sunday 12 May 2019
Report by Nick Smith
It was a great day for being outside. The sun was hot (as the top of my head will testify to) and the ground was hard, providing a perfect opportunity to showcase some running rugby. The Two Wee Reds P5 teams found themselves in different pools in what turned out to be a well organised tournament.
Linlithgow 1s opened with a great game against Strathaven. This initially looked as though it would be a close encounter, but the Linlithgow team showed a greater level of both skill and desire and came away winners by more than 2 tries. All the tackling practice on training field showed its worth and Angus, Fraser and Morgan put in some memorable tackles but everyone should take credit for this victory.
Next came Ardrossan, whose fielded a sizeable team and gave Linlithgow a tough game. Linlithgow lost the ball in the tackle on three or four occasions and the well drilled Ardrossan team took full advantage. The game was close and Ardrossan nicked it by a try at final score.
The final game was against Hillfoots, who seemed to have peaked too early. By the time the Linlithgow 1s lined against them they had already lost one player to injury and another to the local A&E dept with a suspected broken wrist. Three sporting Linlithgow players (Fraser, Scott and Calum) duly turned their shirts inside out and joined them. Linlithgow 1s were too strong, even with the Linlithgow contingent, with some great runs from Cameron, Jay and Thomas leading to well-earned tries. The injuries count continued for Hillfoot and Tom was drafted over from the Linlithgow 2s to help fill the gap. Linlithgow 1s finished winners by more than 5 tries.
Linlithgow 2s started their three matches with a game against Cumnock which they won outright. There was some great defence and on one occasion both Magnus and Ewan put in two big tackles in succession which led to a turn over and a Linlithgow try – Shaun Edwards would have been impressed.
Next came Ayr, whose fielded a team built on bulk. But again the Linlithgow 2s tackling proved too strong. Debutant Sarah scored a great try and Linlithgow 2s played a great game where they kept hold of possession, and after forcing Ayr into making mistakes, seized full advantage. They found themselves victorious again at the final whistle.
The final game of the pool was against the home team, East Kilbride, who used their home advantage to the full; they left the field at the final whistle close winners, leaving Linlithgow 2s in the runner-up position – coincidently the same position at Linlithgow 1s in their pool.
So both Linlithgow teams fought it out for the 3rd and 4th place. This level of rivalry always provides an extra spice to any playoff game. Although the Linlithgow 1s were run away winners in the end, there were some great individual battles. The tackle rate was relentlessly high and some great “tidying up” play from Jay left Joe in no doubt over who was going to get to that ball first!
Many thanks to those who made the journey over to East Kilbride. It is always great to see the Linlithgow teams play so well and in the right sprit.