BELOW PAR PERFORMANCE ALLOWS ACCIES TO PICK
UP MAXIMUM POINTS
Henry Bithray crosses
for Selkirk’s second try on Saturday – his seventh of the season.
Centre Josh Welsh tries to escape the clutches of an Edinburgh Accies defender.
Merolle stands and delivers.
and Luca Berte get airborne.
[Photos by GRANT KINGHORN
Selkirk 24, Edinburgh Accies 26
LACK of consistency cost Selkirk dear on Saturday,
when a patchy performance allowed Edinburgh Accies to leave Philiphaugh with five Tennent’s Premiership points
under their belt.
Having deservedly taken a 12-0 lead through tries by skipper Ewan MacDougall and a cracking score from wing Henry
Bithray, who burst through three tackles on his way to the line, the home players appeared to take their foot off
Instead it was the visitors who finished the first half in AN upbeat fashion - Selkirk’s former allocated pro.
player, Sean Crombie, getting the Accies bandwagon rolling with a try following a prolonged spell of pressure on
the home try line.
Things quickly went downhill for the home team after the break, with tries by Cole Imrie, Matt Campbell and Sole
putting Accies back in the driving seat at 24-12.
With the match in danger of slipping away, Selkirk’s players raised their game in the final quarter and managed
to cut the deficit to just two points with tries by Luca Berte and Andrew Renwick, one of which was converted by
A penalty awarded by the Spanish exchange referee in the final minute of play afforded Selkirk the chance to snatch
victory at the death, but unfortunately for home supporters McColm’s 35-metre attempt dipped agonisingly under
“Today’s result was hugely disappointing,” Selkirk forwards coach Neil Darling said after the match. “We started
off positively but then gave them a soft try just before the break to cut Selkirk’s lead to 12-7.
“At halftime everyone was clear about what we needed to do, but then we came out and missed tackles and didn’t
turn up for the next 15 minutes. The boys finished strongly in the final quarter, but by then it was unfortunately
“We could have snatched it at the end with Aaron’s kick, but in all honesty we shouldn’t have been in that position
if we’d taken our chances in the first half.
“Fair play to Accies, who came back strongly and took their opportunities when they came along, but we switched
off and consequently had our backs against the wall.”
Two home players sustained injuries during the contest – hooker James Bett having to leave the field with a head
knock, while Henry Bithray also had to head to the sidelines after aggravating a back strain.
The Four Seasons Forestry ‘Selkirk Man of the Match’ award went to Luca Berte, who had a solid game in his first
outing for the club at centre.
SELKIRK – A. McColm, H. Bithray, J. Welsh, L. Berte, R. Cottrell, C. Anderson, L. Merolle, L. Pettie, J. Bett,
S. Rankin, P. Forrest, D. Nichol, J. Mackay, S. McClymont, E. MacDougall. Replacements: F. Anderson, L. Martin,
B. Riddell, A. Renwick, A. Mackay.
EDIN. ACCIES – J. Loomes, J. Pecquer, R. Wilson, N. Armstrong, M. Campbell, R. Bonner, M. Love, C. Imrie, S. Crombie,
C. Lacour, A. Inwood, D. Dinnan, C. Thomson, J. Sole, R. Campbell. Replacements: K. Jenkins, C. Lamberton, P. O’Sullivan,
J. Bruce, B. Grainger.
Referee – Inigo Attorasgasti (Spain).
ACCIES EDGE HOME AFTER SELKIRK ‘A’ UNABLE TO HIT THE GROUND RUNNING
Derry Alexander on the charge,
with Kieran Thomson and David Cassidy close at hand.
takes the game to Accies.
Robert Cook secures
clean lineout ball.
Selkirk ‘A’ 21, Edinburgh Accies
A SLOW start saw Selkirk ‘A’ forced to chase the
game in Saturday’s hard-fought Tennent’s Reserve League East 1 fixture against Edinburgh Accies 2nds at Philiphaugh.
Although the home side did manage to take the lead through a try by Nathaniel Armstrong with just 12 minutes left
on the clock, Accies snatched victory deep into injury time when prop Charlie Stuart was driven over from a line-out
to score the all-important try.
After the game Selkirk ‘A’ coach Darren Hoggan reflected on what might have been. “I thought we stuck in very well
in the second half, upping our tempo and playing with more energy and more aggression. However, we just didn’t
turn up in the first half, and that’s pretty much where the game was won and lost.”
The potency of the visitors’ counter-attacking paved the way for the afternoon’s first try. Selkirk lost their
own line-out ball just inside Accies’ 22, and slick handling by the city side’s threequarters resulted in Hamish
McLean touching down in the corner. Ciaran Armstrong added the conversion.
Despite being reduced to 14 men soon afterwards when Armstrong was yellow-carded, Accies stretched their lead through
a try by Fraser Lindsay, making the interval score 12-0 to the visitors.
Having lost lock Derry Alexander with a dislocated finger, Selkirk brought on all six of their replacements at
the start of the second half. After Harry Borthwick was stopped just short of the Accies line, the next drive by
Selkirk’s forwards saw No. 8 Robert Cook dive over for a try, converted by Scott Clark.
Two penalties from the boot of Armstrong put Accies 18-7 in front, but Cook’s second try and one by Nathaniel Armstrong,
both converted by Clark, saw Selkirk get their noses ahead for the first time in the match at 21-18.
In the dying seconds Cook received a yellow card for coming in from the side, and despite desperate defending by
the home pack, Accies clinched victory with Stuart’s last-gasp touchdown following a textbook line-out drive.
A big plus-point for Selkirk was the return to action after injury of the team’s buzz-bomb threequarter, Scrappy
McNeill, whose energy and strong running kept the visitors’ defence at full stretch. Replacement prop James Perry
also made an impact on his first appearance of the season.
The Four Seasons Forestry ‘Selkirk Man of the Match’ award went to David Cassidy
SELKIRK – C. McNeil, N. Armstrong, H. Aynsley, M. Rutter, H. Macdonell, M. Haldane, M. Francis, K. Thomson, D.
Alexander, L. Cassidy, J. Houston, J. Turnbull, R. Cook. Replacements: A. Davidson, M. Mackay, R. Purves, H. Borthwick,
P. Smail, J. Perry.
ACCIES – R. Cameron, H. McLean, J. Gordon, T. Pilkington-Tait, F. Lindsay, C. Armstrong, B. Blyth, C. Stuart, R.
Gregor, F. MacKenzie, C. Bain, R. McConnell, T. Jones, R. Dinnes, J. Compagri. Replacements: R. Scott, P. Burns,
F. Greig, J. DiDomenico, T. Zulu, H. McMillan, T. Bowman.
Referee – Aonghus Ryan (Kelso).
A REAL TEAM EFFORT, AS CASSIDY CLAN JOIN FORCES TO KEEP IT IN THE FAMILY!
Liam Cassidy, David
Cassidy and James Perry all played for Selkirk ‘A’ on Saturday. [Photo – GRANT KINGHORN PICS]
TWO of the first names to be pencilled in on the Selkirk ‘A’ team sheet each week are those of player-coach David
Cassidy and his brother Liam, who captains the side. On Saturday, the family connection was further strengthened
when the pair were joined in the Selkirk squad by their future brother-in-law, James Perry.
James, who plays at prop, is engaged to Michelle Cassidy, the sister of David and Liam and the daughter of Selkirk’s
groundsman and former player Brian Cassidy. “I always enjoy turning out for the club whenever I can,” James told
the selkirkrfc.com website after the match, “and it’s obviously a bit special being able to turn out in the same
team as David and Liam.”
By coincidence it was in a game against Edinburgh Accies that James, who lives with Michelle in Haddington, made
his last appearance for the Selkirk side. The 31-year-old made a big impact when coming off the replacements bench
in the second half of Saturday’s match.
It’s certainly good having you back in a Selkirk jersey, James!
SOMBRE MOMENT AS CLUB HONOURS THE FALLEN OF TWO WORLD WARS
Wreath-layers John Rutherford,
Gus Boag, David Deacon and Donald Macleod stand in silent tribute as Pipe Major Kevin Turnbull plays the lament.
[Photo – GRANT KINGHORN PICS]
THE plaque bearing the names of Selkirk Rugby Club players and officials who lost their lives in the First and
Second World Wars, was the focus for a special act of commemoration at Philiphaugh on Saturday.
The ceremony was again organised by the club’s vice-president, Jim Harold, whose hard work and perseverance had
resulted in the plaque’s commissioning in 2018. “It was a simple ceremony,” Jim told the selkirkrfc.com website,
“and I hope this commemoration will now become an annual event at Philiphaugh. The day went very well, and I’m
grateful to everyone who gave their support.”
A total of four wreaths were laid beneath the plaque – by life member John Rutherford (on behalf of players past
and present), by president Gus Boag (on behalf of the club), by David Deacon (Royal British Legion Scotland) and
by past-president Donald Macleod (on behalf of the club’s supporters). During the minute’s silence, a lament was
played by Pipe Major Kevin Turnbull of Selkirk Pipe Band.
Prior to the wreath-laying, a lunch attended by 70 members and guests was held in the Philiphaugh Suite to help
raise funds for Poppyscotland. The lunch was attended the organisation’s chief executive officer, Mark Bibby, who
thanked the club and its members for their warm welcome and for helping to support the aims of the Poppyscotland
LOOKING to celebrate in style? Selkirk Rugby Club’s
Philiphaugh Function Suite offers free room hire… and more! Professional DJ and party planner LAYLA ANDERSON is
available to hire for your party requirements. Photos can be projected on the suite’s big screen via our personalised
photo projection package. If you would like to book an event don't hesitate to get in touch with Selkirk Rugby
Club’s bar and events manager LAYLA ANDERSON on 07563 617 471.
… AND A GREAT VENUE FOR WEDDINGS!
The Philiphaugh Function Suite at Selkirk Rugby
Football Club is available to hire for weddings and receptions. Affordable and competitive rates. Professional
wedding decoration design and DJ hire also available. If you would like to book, don't hesitate to get in touch
with Selkirk Rugby Club’s bar and events manager LAYLA ANDERSON on 07563 617 471.
16 TENNENT’S PREMIERSHIP G.H.A. v. SELKIRK at Braidholm (2pm kick-off)
TENNENT’S RESERVE LEAGUE EAST 1 HERIOT’S BLUES 2nds
v. SELKIRK ‘A’
at Goldenacre (2pm kick-off)
A full list of games for season 2019 / 2020 can be
viewed on our 'Fixtures'
A full list of results and reports for
all games played this season and the past 18 seasons can be accessed by clicking on the 'Results' link above.
SUSAN’S RUGBY-THEMED PINK HAMPER
RAISES OVER £400 FOR TWO SPECIAL CAUSES
Luke Pettie hands over the pink hamper to winner John Rutherford.
John Rutherford presents Lee Jones’ signed rugby boots to a delighted Elliot Hastie.
SUSAN Welsh is one of Selkirk Rugby Club’s most
passionate supporters, so it’s perhaps no surprise she’s equally enthusiastic when it comes to raising money for
Last month Susan, a project support worker in the BGH’s Margaret Kerr Unit (MKU), organised a special raffle to
raise funds for Breast Cancer Care and the MKU.
The prize was a ‘pink’ hamper, containing, amongst other things, a signed pair of pink rugby boots belonging to
Selkirk internationalist Lee Jones.
“I got the idea when Lee mentioned that all the Glasgow Warriors players each received two pairs of pink boots
to mark last year’s Breast Cancer Awareness Month,” Susan told the selkirkrfc.com website.
“Lee was more than happy to sign and donate a pair for the hamper, which also contained a number of other pink-themed
“I’ve been blown away by the amazing support shown by people at the rugby club and in the town. A particularly
good response came from Selkirk’s past players at their annual lunch earlier in the season. In total the sum of
£436.40 was raised, which was a fantastic result.”
The raffle was drawn by Selkirk vice-captain Luke Pettie, and it was the ticket of club legend John Rutherford
that Luke drew out of the hat first.”
True to form, John spotted young Elliot Hastie standing across on the other side of the Philiphaugh Suite during
the draw, and after picking up the hamper John promptly walked over to the excited 12-year-old and presented him
with Lee’s boots.
Susan says she would like to thank everyone for their kind support, with a special thank-you going to Lee Jones
for donating his rugby boots.
SELKIRK MASCOT ENJOYS AFTERNOON
WILLIAM Green (pictured), a pupil at St Mary’s School,
Melrose, was the official mascot for Saturday’s game between Selkirk and Edinburgh Academical FC. The club hopes
William enjoyed his day, and looks forward to welcoming him back to Philiphaugh in the near future.
LINK FOR VIDEO HIGHLIGHTS OF CURRIE
Here is the link to Saturday’s extended Selkirk
v. Currie match highlights, compiled by Liam Skeldon, that are now on the club’s YouTube channel.
LEADING TRY SCORERS (after 11 matches): 7 – Henry
Bithray; 6 – Ryan Cottrell; 4 - Scott McClymont, James Bett; 3 - Ewan MacDougall, Josh Welsh, Jacob Henry; 2 –
Luca Berte, Callum Anderson, Frazer Anderson, Aaron McColm, Luke Pettie; 1 – Andrew Renwick, Sean Rankin, Luca
Merolle, Bruce Riddell, Jack Houston, Donald Nichol, Robert Cook, Michael Waldron, Andrew McColm, Ross Purves,
Nathaniel Armstrong. Tries scored: 52. Tries conceded: 45.
LEADING POINTS SCORERS (after 11 matches): 51 – Aaron McColm (2 tries, 3 penalties, 16 conversions); 45 - Henry
Bithray (7 tries, 5 conversions); 25 – Ryan Cottrell (6 tries); 20 – James Bett, Scott McClymont (4 tries). Total
points scored: 331. Total points conceded: 300.
MOST APPEARANCES (after 11 matches): 10 – Luca Berte, Callum Anderson, Luke Pettie; 10 – Ewan MacDougall, Peter
Forrest, Aaron McColm, Frazer Anderson Luca Merolle, Josh Welsh, Scott McClymont; 9 – Ryan Cottrell, James Bett,
Bruce Riddell; 7 – Henry Bithray, Donald Nichol; 6 – Andy Mackay, Jack Houston, Ross Nixon; 5 – Sean Rankin, Andrew
McColm, Derry Alexander, Robert Cook; 4 – Michael Waldron, Grant Forrest; 3 – Ross Purves, Harry Borthwick.
(up to & including Nov. 11, 2019)
P 11 W 7 L 3 D 1
LEADING TRY SCORERS (after 11 matches): 7 – Nathaniel Armstrong; 6 – David Cassidy; 4 – Kieran Monks, Jy Griffin;
3 – Lewis Martin, Andrew Renwick; 2 – Robert Cook, Mark Rutter, Liam Blair, Donald Nichol; 1 – Michael Waldron,
Ryan Cottrell, Josh Bain, Matty Francis, Robbie Reilly, Liam Cassidy, Ross Purves, Grant Forrest, Peter Forrest,
Bruce Riddell, Henry Bithray, Gary Robertson. Total tries scored: 47. Total conceded: 36.
LEADING POINTS SCORERS (after 11 matches): 78 – Scott Clark (8 penalties, 27 conversions); 37 – David Cassidy (6
tries, 1 penalty, 2 conversions); 35 – Nathaniel Armstrong (7 tries) 20 – Jy Griffin, Kieran Monks (4 tries). Total
points scored: 324. Total points conceded: 243.
MOST APPEARANCES (after 11 matches): 10 – Liam Cassidy, Mark Rutter, Nathaniel Armstrong; 9 – David Cassidy, Matty
Francis, Kieran Thomson, Matthew Mackay; 8 – Scott Clark, Liam Blair, 7 – Jamie Turnbull, Jy Griffin; 6 – Andrew
Davidson, Harris McDonnell, Matty Brass; 5 –Robert Cook, Kieran Monks; 4 – Moray Haldane, Derry Alexander, Robbie
Reilly, Josh Mackay, Paul Smail, Ross Purves, Harry Borthwick, Michael Waldron.
TENNENT’S EAST RES. LEAGUE DIV. 1 (november 9) SELKIRK ‘A’ 21-23 EDINBURGH
MUSSELBURGH 2nds 51-39 HERIOT'S BLUES 2NDs
BIGGAR 23-35 STEWART'S/MELVILLE FP 2nds
JED-FOREST ‘A’ 22-31 CURRIE CHIEFTAINS ‘A’
BOROUGHMUIR 2A 0-28 HAWICK FORCE
MARR v. ABERDEEN GRAMMAR
GLASGOW HAWKS v. EDINBURGH ACCIES
GHA V. SELKIRK
CURRIE CHIEFTAINs v. MUSSELBURGH
HAWICK v. JED-FOREST
TENNENT’S EAST RES.
LEAGUE DIV. 1 (november 16)
CURRIE CHIEFTAINS ‘A’ v. MUSSELBURGH 2nds
STEWART'S/MELVILLE fp 2nds v. BOROUGHMUIR 2A
HAWICK FORCe v. JED-FOREST ‘A’
EDINBURGH accies 2nds v. BIGGAR 2nds
HERIOT'S BLUES 2NDs v. SELKIRK ‘A’
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