SELKIRK ‘A’ FINDING THE GOING TOUGH IN HIGHLY COMPETITIVE RESERVE LEAGUE

Selkirk ‘A’ winger Gavin Ross sets off on another break upfield against G.H.A. 2nds, backed up by team-mate Alan Lambie .

Centre Dave Allan prepares to hand off G.H.A. openside Fergus Haig as Selkirk ‘A’ battle to get into the game.

[Photos: GRANT KINGHORN PICS]

SELKIRK ‘A’ 6, G.H.A. 2nds 31

DESPITE putting up a valiant display in Saturday’s BT Reserve League National 2 match at Philiphaugh, defeat by a well-drilled and physical G.H.A. 2nds side leaves Selkirk ‘A’ still looking for their first win of the season.
The home team’s cause wasn’t helped when Ross Purves, Kieran Thomson, Harry Borthwick, Jamie Turnbull and Rory Banks all had to retire injured at various stages of the game, resulting in the introduction of uncontested scrums for the final 20 minutes of the match.
Selkirk took the lead from a Rory Banks penalty in the 12th minute, but a scything diagonal break on the half-hour mark by Jonny Lyons (a dead ringer for Highlander actor Christopher Lambert) led to a try in the corner for G.H.A. winger Declan Miller, superbly converted by fly-half Glen Scott. The visiting No. 10 proved G.H.A.’s key player, distributing well and missing just one of six goal attempts.
Ahead 10-3 at the break thanks to a 36th minute Scott penalty, G.H.A. put the game beyond Selkirk’s reach in the second half with further tries from Tom Ritchie and a brace by Andrew Spowart, with Scott converting all three. The home side’s only reply was a second Banks penalty.
Selkirk can take heart from two passages of inspired defending in each half when the visitors were camped on their try line, while centres Dave Allan and Douglas Swinbanks put together some telling breaks (Allan later being named Selkirk’s ‘Man of the Match’).
A special mention goes to ‘birthday boy’ Strath Mackenzie, who made a big impact off the bench, while the closest Selkirk came to scoring was late in the game when Frazer Anderson made 60 metres from a quickly taken penalty – only to be hauled down just short of the G.H.A. line.
SELKIRK – R. Hamilton, G. Ross, D. Swinbanks, D. Allan, L. Martin, R. Banks, F. Anderson, J. Stephen, R. Purves, K. Thomson, A. Lambie, J. Turnbull, R. Cook, F. Amos, H. Borthwick. Replacements: S. Mackenzie J. Griffin, R. Reilly, G. Baird, A. Lyall.
G.H.A. – A. Brennan, D. Miller, R. Jerecivick, R. Findlay, A. Spowart, G. Scott, M. Clark, J. White, R. Firth, C. Braid, J. Lyons, F. Gowan, L. Manunga, F. Haig, T. Ritchie. Replacements: M. Ryan, D. Kellock.
Referee – Andrew Edgar (St Boswells).