Kirkcaldy 24 Selkirk 30

Selkirk show character in gutsy victory at Kirkcaldy

JUST as they did following the opening day defeat by Murrayfield Wanderers, Selkirk bounced straight back from last weekend’s debacle at Dundee to claim a thoroughly deserved victory over Kirkcaldy.
The scale of the visitors’ achievement can be gauged from the fact that this was Selkirk’s first victory at Beveridge Park since October, 1991. On that day a certain Michael Jaffray scored a hat-trick of tries... and the evergreen Selkirk threequarter took the field once again on Saturday — his 393rd senior appearance for the Philiphaugh team.
Sadly a knee injury forced the 34-year-old fire-fighter to withdraw to the sidelines early in the second half, but this was the only damper on an otherwise highly satisfactory afternoon for the Souters.
A late call-off by ’flu victim Matt de Franck saw Jim Ross drafted into the back row, and the utility player turned in a typically solid performance. Fellow flanker Ryan Crockatt also impressed in his comeback game, while lock Dwayne Jackson was always in the thick of the action.
The platform for Saturday’s win was laid up front, with the Selkirk pack taking the game to their opponents at every opportunity. As if to underline the point, all four of the visitors’ tries were scored by forwards — two from Martin Murray and one each by Iain Purves and Marcus Barnett — while stand-off Guy Blair added two penalties and two conversions.
Kirkcaldy’s tries came from Jenkins and McConnell — the latter occurring deep in injury time — with John Mitchell converting both scores and adding four penalties.
Selkirk skipper Scott Tomlinson was predictably upbeat about his side’s performance after the match. “It was nice to see pressure being turned into points for a change, and the whole pack, from one to eight, deserve credit for a five-star display.
“This was our fourth successive game away from home, and it says a lot about this team’s character that they were able to raise their game so effectively, following the difficulties we encountered at Dundee the previous Saturday.
“It’s all down to taking the right attitude on to the field. We did that on Saturday, and the players realise they will have to raise the tempo still further for the visit of Gala this weekend.”
An unusual feature of the Beveridge Park encounter was the injury suffered by Gala referee Jimmy Graham, who sustained a leg knock in an
accidental collision with Guy Blair, as the visiting stand-off attempted to charge down a conversion kick. A touch-judge took over the refereeing duties for the remainder of the match.

TRIED AND TESTED: Selkirk’s three try scorers at Beveridge Park — Martin Murray (2), Iain Purves and Marcus Barnett.

SELKIRK — D. Cassidy, F. Harkness , A. Lyall, M. Jaffray (rep. M. McVie 49 mins), N. Brown, G. Blair, S. Tomlinson, I. Purves (rep. S. Renwick 65 mins), E. Robbie (rep. I. Walling 75 mins), M. Murray, N. Darling, D. Jackson , R. Crockatt (rep. M. Barnett, 65 mins), J. Ross , A. Heatlie.