Currie 88, Selkirk 3

No hiding place as Selkirk players find themselves on the end of Malleny Park mauling

SEEING RED. Selkirk openside flanker David Gray looks baffled as referee Gary Gordon holds up a red card at Malleny Park on Saturday.

IT was a shell-shocked Selkirk side which trooped off the Malleny Park pitch on Saturday following a crushing defeat at the hands of Scottish Hydro Premier One leaders Currie. The signs of progress glimpsed in the previous weekend's victory at Inverleith were buried under Currie's sustained and brutal onslaught.

In the corresponding fixture last year the visitors lost 62-20, but you have to go back to October, 2003, to find the last time Selkirk conceded 13 tries - a 79-10 loss to Biggar at Hartreemill. Coach Kevin Barrie was characteristically candid when he spoke to the web site after the match.

"It's hugely disappointing to be on the receiving end of such a big defeat, but at the same time you have to give Currie credit for such a powerful performance. Believe it or not we did have chances to score, but didn't have the wherewithal to get over the line.

"The biggest problem we have is the lack of depth in our squad. Neil Darling and David Gray were both under the weather with viruses during the week, while Michael McVie and Gavin Craig are both playing with injuries. This obviously isn't an ideal scenario, but without suitable replacements it's what we have to do.

"It also didn't help that we had two yellow cards and a red one, which meant we were reduced to 14 men for almost an hour of the game. Trying to compete with a team like Currie when you're one man down is impossible, and because we couldn't match up to them physically we began to creak all over.

"It's taken the club 14 years to get back into the top division and it's vital we manage to stay there. The players were very hard on themselves in the dressing room after the game, and have called for an extra session on Monday night. No-one needs reminding how important this Saturday's match against West is going to be, so it's up to everyone involved with the club to really get behind the players this weekend."

Despite the dominance of Currie, a number of Selkirk players still managed to make their mark on the game, with Scott Hendrie in particular demonstrating what a big-hearted player he is both in attack and defence. Scott's brother Jason and fly-half Michael Rutherford also tackled themselves to a standstill, while up front pack leader Rory Aglen gave a typically brave lead.

It was Scott Hendrie who scored Selkirk's only points with a first half penalty, while Currie's tries came from Mark Scott (2), Johnny Smith (2), Willie Moala (2), Jamie Thomson, Andy McMahon, Neil Scobie, Mark Cairns, Dougie Fife, Chris Kinloch and Jim Taggart. Smith added 10 conversions and a penalty.

First half yellow cards were shown to lock Simon Willet and number eight Andrew Renwick, with flanker David Gray receiving his marching orders early in the second period immediately after he had taken the field to replace Neil Darling.

CATCH ME IF YOU CAN. Selkirk stand-off Michael Rutherford cuts through the Currie line to launch a counter-attack at Malleny Park on Saturday. Team-mate Gavin Craig lets Rud know that he's up in support. (Photos: Grant Kinghorn)

SELKIRK - F. Harkness, S. Hendrie, A. Dunbar, G. Craig, J. Hendrie, M. Rutherford, M. McVie, M. Murray, S. Forrest, R. Taylor, R. Aglen, S. Willet, N. Darling, D. Gray, A. Renwick. Replacements: S. Tomlinson G. Patterson, D. Moussa, D. Grieve, K. Connor, A. Lyall.

Referee - Gary Gordon (Hillfoots).