Damian Byrne pushes through the Heriots defence, despite their efforts


AFTER a tough game against Stirling the previous week, Selkirk were determined to match up against what seemed to be a strong Heriots side on Saturday.

It looked as though Selkirk might manage to take an early lead in the third minute through a penalty, but the kick was narrowly missed by Dashton Wellman. Heriots were relentless going forward from there though, eventually being awarded a penalty try just ten minutes into the match, which their scrum-half Wilson converted.

Wellman made up for his early error though, putting a penalty in between the posts to gain three points for the Souters. Another converted penalty try for Heriots in the 20th minute however left both the Selkirk side and their supporters frustrated.

This may have motivated the 1st XV, as only a few minutes later, prop Kieran Cooney grubber kicked the ball through the Heriots defence and raced after it, diving down over the line for a score, with Wellman converting.

Heriots didn't slow down though, as their hooker, Liness, pushed through the defence for their third try of the game. Wilson then converted again.

Play was stopped soon after this due to Angus Duckett going to ground with an injury. Callum Johnston then came on to replace him, as Duckett walked off with what was later revealed to be a broken arm.

Heriots scored again just after this, with their flanker Turley touching the ball down between the posts, and Wilson converted once again.

There was disaster for Selkirk just before half time, as Cata Graur was shown a red card for stamping, leaving Selkirk with 14 men for the rest of the match. A quick shuffle of positions saw Damian Byrne come on as the new prop, with Johnston coming off again, just a couple of minutes before the referee blew for half time.

Selkirk came back in the second half looking like a different team, as they held off almost every Heriots attack. They eventually got their reward through a try from newly-returned Andrew Renwick. Wellman then converted again, showing his kicking ability.

Heriots managed to push through the defence eventually, scoring an unconverted try through their number one McCallum. Selkirk fought back in the next five minutes with Dashton Wellman pulling off a dummy to burst through the final few Heriots men to touch down for his first try for Selkirk, before successfully converting.

Selkirk then seemed to take the upper hand, with Mikey Davies outpacing the last Heriots player to touch down making it 29-33, leaving Selkirk supporters on the edge of their seats in the final few minutes. Unfortunately, Selkirk couldn't produce a final try, despite their second-half heroics, as the ref blew for the end of the match. It was ultimately a loss for the Souters, but no-one could be disappointed with the 1st XV's efforts.

Speaking after the match, Selkirk 1st XV coach Neill Wood said: "Overall I saw a great improvement in the team's performance from last week. I think physically, we matched them, and I was delighted with how the team played. Let's just hope next week they keep taking those important steps forward."

The Four Seasons Forestry man of the match was awarded to Selkirk's number eight Callum Marshall
on his100th appearance for the club.

The 1st XV will be looking for their first win of the season next week against Currie, at Mallerny Park.

SELKIRK: J. Welsh, L. MacLennan, C. Gregory-Ring, R. Nixon, S. Hendrie, D. Wellman, M. Davies, K. Cooney, J. Bett, C. Graur, Y. Hartzenberg, A. Renwick, E. MacDougall, A. Duckett, C. Marshall. Replacements: C. Johnston, C. MacDougall, R. Wilson, D. Byrne, M. Gordon.

HERIOTS: C. Simpson, H. Boisseau, L. Steele, C. Ferguson, M. Learmonth, S. Edwards, G. Wilson, M. McCallum, M. Liness, S. Cessford, R. Nimmo, R. Van Heerden, J. Turley, S. Dewar, J. Hill. Replacements: S. Mustard, M. Boab, I. Wilson, T. Wilson, A. Matthews.

Referee: Neil Paterson (Dundee)