Dumfries Saints 2nds 12, Selkirk ‘A’ 47

INJURY-HIT SELKIRK ‘A’ SIDE CLINCH IMPRESSIVE WIN AT DUMFRIES

DESPITE playing with only 14 men for the final half-hour, Selkirk ‘A’ held their nerve to chalk up a richly deserved victory over Dumfries Saints 2nds in Saturday’s BT Reserve League National 2 fixture at New Abbey Road.

What especially pleased coaches Fraser Jack and Graham Marshall was the fighting spirit shown by the entire Selkirk squad. “We were missing several regulars,” Fraser Jack told the selkirkrfc.com web site after the match, “which meant a lot of people playing out of position. However, the young lads and Stormers players in our 17-man squad showed real character against a big and stuffy Dumfries team.

“Everyone played their part, and the collective effort over the 80 minutes was tremendous. I thought our back row was outstanding, while lock Jack Houston continues to improve with every outing. Given the difficulties we faced today, this was a gutsy display.”

Things got off to the worst possible start for the visitors when, in the first minute, centre Bob Wilkinson sustained an injury to his thumb. Despite having it strapped and returning to the field, the pain was such he had to retire to the sidelines in the 12th minute and took no further part in proceedings. An X-ray taken at the BGH later revealed the thumb was broken.

His place in the centre was taken by Ross Nixon, himself recovering from an injury which has kept him sidelined this season. After Selkirk opened the scoring with a try from wing Lewis Martin, Nixon got on the score sheet himself with a touchdown in the 17th minute, converted by Jack Elliot.

Another try by Martin put the visitors 19-0 up, with Kieran Monks going over for Selkirk’s bonus point try soon afterwards. Dumfries hit back with a converted try just before the interval, making the halftime score 26-7 in the Souters’ favour.

Selkirk suffered another setback five minutes after the break when prop Kyle Ramage retired with a shoulder knock, Chris Sanders coming on as replacement. Five minutes later Alistair Lyall, having played a blinder out of position at flanker, limped to the touchline after twisting his knee, leaving Selkirk a man short for the remainder of the contest.

Further tries by Lewis Martin (his third) and Kieran Monks (his second), put the visitors out of sight, with Jack Elliot – who landed six conversions - scoring Selkirk’s final try. Man of the match for Selkirk: wing-forward Scott McClymont.

SELKIRK –C. Bruce, K. Monks, J. Elliot, B. Wilkinson, L. Martin, S. Tough, K. Stillie, J. Stephen, R. Purves, K. Ramage, J. Houston, R. Cook, S. McClymont, A. Lyall, S. McDonald. Replacements: R. Nixon, C. Sanders.