No pro and no points
SELKIRK were left out in the cold as Hawick rubbed
salt in the Philiphaugh club's wounds with a simplistic victory to book their Premiership 1 status. The biggest
crowd of the season saw probably the most error-strewn contest of the year that left Selkirk pointless for the
second week in a row.
"It's a confidence thing and we need to pick the boys up," said skipper Fraser Harkness, who had no qualms
about the result. "We were well beaten on the day." The match accentuated President Donald Macleod's
claim that Premiership 1 is an imbalanced playing field with the allocation of pros. "I do not believe that
this is much fun or benefit or both the winning and losing team or does any good for the game," he said.
For Hawick were able to field ex-Selkirk star, Alex Dunbar (Glasgow Warriors), at No. 12 and Lewis Niven (Edinburgh)
in the front row while Selkirk's assistance was zilch.
And the Souters had to play without the injured Gavin Craig and Darren Clapperton and the flu-struck David Cassidy
while, to add to their woes, Rob Taylor and Ross Armstrong each received notable injuries.
So Hawick, led by Bruce McNeil who has moved from prop to No. 8, took their bedevilled opponents to the cleaners
and only twice came close to a home try - in each half.
"We knew that it would be tough here and we had to work hard, said McNeil. "But we got what we wanted
with a win and now we must build for the future."
And despite being told, erroneously, at half-time that Stirling, their main threat, were leading Melrose. Selkirk
were not helped either by referee Andrew Macpherson, who failed to issue a yellow card for a high tackle on Ciaran
Beattie in the first half, missed a second one and also failed to notice a deliberate knock-on which turned a potential
Selkirk try into a Hawick score. Perhaps just as well that Celtic manager Neil Lennon was not in the stand. That
apart, Selkirk could have few complaints. "What else can I say," said backs coach Rodney Pow. "You
saw things for yourself and even more horrendous injuries."
By half-time it was game over as Greg Anderson and Rory Hutton, along with a Graham Hogg penalty, had put Hawick
in the driving seat.
It was much of the same after the break as the Hawick pack took control and saw Neil Darling and Craig Charters
yellow-carded after a midfield stramash.
Daniel Landels and Steven Anderson completed the rout, Hogg converting the former's try - to leave Selkirk facing
the play-offs and the busiest club in the medical room.
Selkirk: F. Harkness; N. Godsmark, S. Hendrie,
R. Armstrong, C. Beattie; R. Banks, M. McVie; G. Patterson, M. Martin, R. Taylor, C. Marshall, S. Willett, N. Darling,
R. Godsmark, A. Renwick. Subs: M. Rutherford, C. Johnston, M. Weller, S. Forrest, C. Patton,