Melrose 2nds 13, Selkirk 2nds 12

Selkirk 2nds miss out on the last kick of game

A PENALTY awarded in the dying seconds of Saturday's Roadhead Farm Feeds Border Championship match at Annay Road gave Selkirk the chance to edge out Melrose and maintain their unbeaten league record. However, Aussie fly-half Ian McConnel's kick drifted wide, allowing the home team to preserve its own 100 per cent record.

In a bruising encounter punctuated by flurries of fisticuffs, it was Melrose who dominated the opening half, taking the lead in the fifth minute with a converted try following a line-out drive.

To their credit, thereafter the visitors' defence proved rock-solid, and just before the interval Selkirk managed to cut the deficit. Richard Cook won possession at a line-out, with prop Gordon Patterson - who had an excellent match for the Souters - then breenging upfield.

The ball eventually reached the visitors' strong-running wing, Struan Jack, who powered his way past three defenders to score wide out. This made the halftime score 7-5 to Melrose.

After the break it was Selkirk who started to take control, with flanker Greg Hancock securing plenty of ball in the loose, and centre Michael Jaffray managing to consistently break the gain line.

However, the home team stretched their lead from a penalty, but shortly afterwards Selkirk took the lead from another fine try. McConnel broke inside and found Patterson in support. The prop showed great skill in dummying his way past a clutch of Melrose players to score a fine solo try. Ben Cooper converted.

Melrose then landed a second penalty to regain a one-point advantage, before Selkirk had the chance to clinch victory with an injury time penalty… but ultimately had to settle for a losing bonus point.

SELKIRK - B. Cooper, S. Jack, C. Hunter, M. Jaffray, G. Fairbairn, I. McConnell, F. Jack, G. Patterson, J. Duncan, R. Price, K. Connor, M. Rodgerson, G. Hancock, N. Brown, R. Cook. Replacements - J. Stephens, P. Cameron, E. Robbie, R. Monks.

Referee - D. Dods (Gala).

Gordon Patterson - turned
in superb performance.

Struan Jack - scored solo
try in first half for Selkirk.