1st XV Match Reports

National League Rugby

Ardrossan Accies v Preston Lodge R.F.C.

By Danny McGreish

Accies opponent at the Memorial Field was East Lothian club Preston Lodge, with 6 places and 41 points separating both sides in the league table and the home side in the relegation zone, a victory for the visitors could be expected but Accies had other ideas. Prompting “if only they had” questions in the bar at the end of the match.

Preston Lodge kicked off the match attacking towards the Pavilion end, Gordon Telfer caught the ball which was transferred quickly to Jack Anderson to punt long upfield. The visitors launched an attack down the right but “knocked on” giving the home side the first scrum.

Accies produced a good attacking move on the 5th minute after Andy Duncan released Grant Lewis who sprinted up the left wing, his kick ahead and chase to the try line was thwarted by the visiting full back who managed to get the touch down.

The home side were beginning to fall foul of the referee, giving the visitors chances to get points but their kicker was unable to find accuracy in his attempts.

With 20 minutes gone both sides had parity in both possession and territory, the flow of the match however was being regularly disrupted by the number of penalties being called by the match official.

The stalemate was eventually broken on the 30 min mark, after Jack Anderson was successful with a penalty attempt to put Accies 3 points in front.

The home side was beginning to apply pressure inside their opponents half, a Calum McKechnie burst up the right wing came very close to scoring but his inside pass to Robert Hunter was spilled with the line beckoning and the chance lost. Accies pressure was eventually rewarded on the 37th minute when Ben Hamilton finished off a driving maul to touch down, the conversion was good to put Accies 10 points in front.

The home side’s pack were beginning to get the better of their much larger opponents and the foraging play of Milan Marinkovic in particular was a constant threat to the visitors.

 

Half Time Score

Accies 10 Preston Lodge 0

 

Straight from the restart, Accies were awarded a penalty in front of the visitor’s posts, instead of taking the 3 points on offer they took a quick tap but the ball was nudged forward in the transfer giving Preston Lodge a scrum. The home pack drove their opponents back, then a wonderful bit of Jack Anderson ingenuity, saw him cross kick 30 meters into the grasp of Grant Lewis to go in for the score. Anderson also converted a very difficult kick.

The home side were beginning to dominant all aspects of the match and indeed with 15 minutes of the half gone, the visitors had been unable to get into the home half. The Accies were now opting for scrums rather than kicking penalties such was their confidence, they really should have scored twice in succession but the mist of “white line fever” came over two close attempts on the Preston Lodge line, when a simple pop pass could have brought rewards.

Stuart Docherty retired injured and was replaced by Scott Campbell in the Accies front row.

Accies scored their third try on the 24th minute after the visiting full back made a mess of clearing the ball inside his 22, from an attacking scrum the ball was transferred quickly to Andy Duncan who offloaded to Robert Hunter to go in at the corner. The conversion was missed. They further extended their lead 6 minutes later after Stuart Lewis broke up the blind side, his pass outside released Calum McKechnie who stepped inside the cover defence and sprinted in for the try. Jack Anderson Converted. With 10 minutes remaining, Accies brought on Ruaridh Grayston, Ruaridh Anderson and Jamie Thomson to finish the match.

Jack Anderson finished off the match with another penalty.

 

Final Score

Accies 32 Preston Lodge  0

 

On the final whistle Accies thoroughly deserved their bonus point win, as they probably put in their best performance to date. The forward pack in particular simply destroyed their opposition, driving them back at every opportunity.

Former President, Captain and scrum half Owen Phillips named Milan Marinkovic as his man of the match.

Accies Team

B.Hamilton, I.Totic, S.Docherty, E.Thomson, D.Alexander, S.Lamont(Capt), M.Marinkovic, G.Telfer,

S.Lewis, J.Anderson, G.Lewis, R.Hunter, B.Hunter, C.McKechnie, A.Duncan.

Subs. S.Campbell, J.Thomson, R.Anderson, R.Grayston (all used)

National League Rugby
Ardrossan Accies v Cartha R.F.C.
by Danny McGreish

This was a game that pitched the second bottom club against the second top team in the league. The more pessimistic of the home supporters were predicting a big loss; this wasn’t the case although the better team did win in the end.

In perfect conditions Jack Anderson kicked off with Accies attacking the school end of the pitch, the home side spilled the ball giving the visitors the first scrum of the match. Quick distribution from the base of the scrum allowed the Cartha backs to get into the home 22 where they were awarded a penalty , Wayne Burrows attempt at the posts was successful to put his side 3 points in front after 4 minutes of play.

Accies did have a couple of chances to open their account, an Andy Duncan break took play 10 metres from the visitor’s line but the ball was spilled in the offload and the chance gone. A Milan Marinkovic pick up and drive came even closer but Cartha managed to win the ball at the ruck and clear the danger.

The home side did eventually score after a penalty was taken quickly, Gordon Telfer drove close before South African recruit Darren Alexander picked up and went in for his first try for the club. The conversion was missed but Accies were in front after 20 minutes.

5 minutes later poor Accies defence allowed Cartha to score their first try after Callum Dickson finished off a fine handling move to score. The conversion was missed.

The visitors further extended their lead on the half hour mark after their big pack drove deep into the Accies 22, from the ruck Thomas Davidson spun the ball wide for Garret Doughty to go in for the try. The conversion was good.

Virtually straight from the restart, slack Accies play allowed the visitors to score their third try when again it was Callum Dickson who finished off a handling move to score. Wayne Burrows converted to put his side on 22 points.

As the halftime whistle approached Accies scored their second try after Gordon Telfer touched down after a good break by New Zealander Corry Quinn, Jack Anderson converted,

Half Time Score
Accies 12 Cartha 22

2 minutes into the second half Cartha scored again , from an attacking lineout the visitors big pack drove for the line , before the ball was released to No 8 Peter Hollier to go in for Cartha’s fourth and bonus point score. The conversion was missed. Accies Corry Quinn was also yellow carded for a high tackle as he tried to prevent the try being scored.

Accies scrum was “creaking” at times against much heavier opponents but they were competing well and getting their fair share of the ball but any attacking moves were breaking down as the ball was being “spilled” with regularity.

Cartha scored their 5th try after Callum Dickson scored his 3rd try of the afternoon when he finished off a forward surge to the line, the conversion was good.

Cartha were now having their best spell of the match as they were dominating possession and territory, they were eventually rewarded when Thomas Davidson finished off a sweeping move to go in for a try. The conversion was missed.

With 10 minutes remaining Andy Duncan burst through the visitors defence to score, the conversion was missed.

As full time approached Callum McKechnie who had a fine match, scored a well deserved try to give Accies a bonus point. The conversion was good.

Final Score
Accies 24 Cartha 39

In the end there was not a huge difference between the sides, Cartha deserved their win because they managed the game better and made fewer mistakes. Accies for their part give the ball away far too easily, along with a defensive fragility that also has to be resolved if relegation is to be avoided.

Better news for the Memorial Field faithful was that the 2nd xv (AKA ,Finnegan’s Fusiliers) recorded a thumping 61 – 5 victory over Clydebank R.F.C.

B.T. National League Rugby 2

Hillhead/ Jordanhill R.F.C.  v Ardrossan Accies

by Danny McGreish

Accies travelled to the West End of Glasgow for this bottom of the table clash, hoping to add another victory and edge them away from the relegation zone. Accies team sheet showed two recent overseas recruits, Darren Alexander (South Africa) at lock forward and Cody Quinn (New Zealand) on the replacements bench.

On a dry but cold Hughenden the home side kicked off but a knock on gave Accies the first of the numerous scrums that were to occur in the match.

On the 10th minute the visitors had a chance to open their account after Ruaridh Anderson charged down an attempted clearance kick, Gordon Telfer gathered and drove deep into the home sides half where they conceded a penalty. A kick to touch, a good take by Stuart Lamont and driving maul to the line but the ball squirted out the back and the opportunity lost.

Shorty after another Telfer burst up the middle took play into the opposition 22 but again the move came to no avail after Accies were penalised for not releasing in the tackle.

Play was becoming a bit frantic and lacked fluidity, not helped by a match official who was reluctant to play any advantage, also the majority of action was occurring in the midfield of the pitch.

Accies opened their account on the 20th minute after another Gordon Telfer burst upfield from a lineout, the ball was recycled and from the ruck Telfer was at hand to go in for the score. Jack Anderson kicked the conversion.

The home side came close on the 25th minute when burly tight head prop drove through the Accies defence, his offload found centre Scott Halliday who was denied a score by the excellent cover tackle by Ruaridh Anderson.

Accies were beginning to put width on the ball and certainly looked the more composed of the two sides , the pack were dominant in the rucks where Milan Marinkovic was particularly effective.

The visitors pressure on the home side was rewarded with a penalty, Hillhead were also reduced to 14 players after the referee issued a yellow card to No 8 Harry Cordner for persistent infringement. Jack Anderson’s attempt at the posts rebounded off the crossbar and scrambled into touch.

On the 25th minute, Accies were again denied another score after a cross field move released Robert Hunter to reach the try line but the referee decided the ball had gone forward in the final pass.

In the last move of the half Accies should have scored again , Robert Hunter charged up the wing his inside pass found Stuart Lewis in support who put in a grubber kick towards the try line. The Hillhead defence dithered in clearing and conceded a penalty. Accies opted for a scrum, another penalty, another scrum, another penalty, another scrum but this time the ball squirted out and scrambled into touch.

 

Half time Score

Hillhead  0  Accies  7

 

Straight from the kick off Accies attacked down the left but a two man overlap was ignored and a certain score was wasted.

Accies started to use their replacements bench with Cody Quinn on for Jamie Thomson

The visitors added another 3 points when Jack Anderson put over a difficult kick on the 15th minute of the half. 5 minutes later he put over another touchline penalty to put them on 13 points.

A tactical change saw Innes Frazer and Scott Campbell came off the bench to replace Stuart Docherty and Istok Totic and an injury to Andy Duncan saw Ruaridh Anderson move to centre and Ruaridh Grayson come on to the wing.

The rest of the match was a bit like the first with the home side making very little incursions that were worrying the Accies defence , 12 minutes from the end Innes Frazer was sent to the sin bin. With the visitors reduced to 14, Hillhead eventually scored after left Wing  Scott Busby went over in the corner. Rory Harte kicked a very difficult conversion.

Full Time Score

Hillhead  7  Accies  13

 

In the end this was not one of rugby’s great games, Accies should have won by much more as they were never really tested. The two new recruits played well and look to be an asset to the squad but a couple of players put in below par performances against what was somewhat mediocre opposition.

B.T. Cup

Ardrossan Accies v Boroughmuir

by Danny McGreish

Accies visitors for the second round of the B.T. Cup was Premiership side Boroughmuir , so a formidable task was in store for the home team if they were to progress further in the competition.

Jack Anderson kicked off the match for Accies in dry conditions but on a heavy pitch , they were playing towards the school end. On the 5th minute the home side were awarded the first scrum of the match , a Stuart Lamont pick up from the base started an attacking move which involved 4 phases of play before the ball was scrambled into touch 10 metres from the visitors line.

Accies were starting to be penalised by the referee allowing Chris Laidlaw to kick to touch giving his side attacking lineouts. The towering figure of Callum Atkinson was commanding the line-out and instigating driving mauls towards the Accies line. Boroughmuir eventually scored on the 15th minute after the home side were again penalised, the same script , kick to touch ,driving maul and prop forward Dan Winning on hand to touch down. Laidlaw converted.

Straight from the restart kick- off Accies should have scored when the visitors clearance kick was charged down 3 metres out from their line, Accies forwards piled in and had several short range drives to the line but each time they were stopped just short .

Boroughmuir scored again on the 20th minute after Accies were again “pinged” for entering a ruck from the side. Another Laidlaw kick to touch, from the line-out the ball was transferred wide to No 8 Craig Keddie to go through the Accies defence and score. The conversion was good.

The referee issued a yellow card to Milan Marinkovich and the home side were now down to 14 players for the next ten minutes

The visitors taking advantage of their numerical superiority, piled on the pressure and it was only a matter of time before the under siege home defence cracked. From a line-out the ball was transferred quickly to the winger Jordan Edmunds who drove deep into the home 22 before passing inside to Matt Walker who went in for the score. Laidlaw converted.

On the 30th minute they further extended their lead with a fourth and bonus point try after Full Back Dougie Steele finished off a slick handling move to touch down. The conversion was good.

Accies were still in the game however and they did come close but were guilty of spilling the ball at critical moments and not being able to put together a coherent exit strategy when under pressure.

The home side did score on the 35th minute when they attacked down the blind side and young outside centre Rhuridh Anderson was on hand to receive the final pass , sprint in and touchdown. Jack Anderson kicked the conversion.

Accies started to use their bench with Istok Totic coming on at Hooker and Scott Campbell moving into the back row.

Half Time Score

Accies 7 Boroughmuir 28

The second half started with the visitors keeping the home side on the back foot , their big mobile pack had the edge in the set piece giving their backs the ideal platform to spread the ball wide to the wings. From one such move 10 minutes into the second half, No 14 Grant McConnell scored their 5th try after he powered down the touchline then stepped inside to score. The conversion was good.

Accies had the opportunity to score on the 20th minute after Andy Duncan instigated a move up the right hand side of the pitch , the ball was transferred out to the wing and play was taken deep inside the Boroughmuir 22 but the final inside pass went to a defender and the chance lost.

The home side brought on Innes Frazer at tight head , Milan Marinkovic replaced Jamie Thomson and Stewart Lewis came on at 14

Boroughmuir’s 6th and 7th scores came on the 30th and 35th minute respectively, both scored by left wing Jordan Edmunds. The first was a result of an errant up field punt by the Accies, Dougie Steele fielded the ball and started a sweeping move that was finished off by Edmunds who powered over. The conversion was good. The second was off a scrum on Accies 22, the ball quickly transferred out wide for the score .The conversion was missed.

In the dying minutes of the match , Accies scored their second try after Robert Hunter gathered a Gordon Telfer offload to sprint in at the corner. The conversion was missed.

Final Score

Accies 12 Boroughmuir 45

On the final whistle Boroughmuir’s more experienced players produced a victory over the home side ,they combined precision handling and continuity in attack that kept the pressure on the Accies. However, if Accies could have avoided penalties (12), the yellow card , eradicate mistakes in passing and have the ability to finish off opportunities , then the result could have been a bit closer.

National League Rugby

Ardrossan Accies v Biggar R.F.C.

by Danny McGreish

It was a day of first’s at the Memorial field on Saturday, Ian Lamont and Craig Millar making their debut , 4 sets of brothers in the team and Accies looking for their first win in the league programme.

Iain Chisholm kicked off the match for Biggar , Accies were playing towards the school end ,into the sun and a slight wind.

The visitors started quickly , with a fine burst through the middle by Gregor Stewart to take play into the Accies half where they were awarded a penalty. A kick to touch gave them an attacking lineout , a catch and drive by their big pack took them close , another penalty but this time they elected for a scrum from which No 8 Andrew Dunlop picked up and barged through for the try. The conversion was good to put Biggar on 7 points with 5 minutes played.

The visitors had Accies on the back foot as their pack provided good ball for their backs to mount several attacks into the home side’s 22 , Accies conceded another penalty as the visitors applied the pressure. Again Biggar used the driving maul from an attacking lineout and No 7 Euan Sanderson went in for the score. The conversion was missed but they were now 12 points in front with 12 minutes played.

Accies were beginning to get into the game and getting themselves into threatening positions ,a good scoring opportunity was lost when they had an attacking lineout 15 metres in from the opposition line , but a Biggar player disrupted the lineout and the opportunity was lost.

The home side were enjoying their best spell of the half , putting their opponents under pressure, creating several chances and forcing them back , Biggar were beginning to be penalised regularly as they attempted to stop quick Accies ball at the ruck. Eventually the referee issued a yellow card and sent their No 8 to the sin bin for persistent infringement .

Accies pressure was finally rewarded after Ben Hamilton finished off a driving maul to score, the conversion was missed.

Innes Frazer came off the Accies bench to take up the tight head berth.

Both sides were trading penalties and for a spell there was little continuity of play ,as halftime approached Biggar added another 3 points after Richard Peacock kicked a penalty.

Half Time Score

Accies 5 Biggar 15

Accies started the second half by taking the game to their opponents , they recycled the ball well and were shifting the point of attack ,testing Biggar’s defence. Jack Anderson added another 3 points to their total when he put over a difficult penalty kick after the visitors were ” pinged ” not rolling away .

5 minutes later Anderson again added a further 3 points with another accurate penalty, to put his side on 11 points.

Accies were now becoming the better side , they were still guilty of basic errors at times but the scrums were much more solid and the advantage that Biggar had in the first half had been nullified.

Another penalty to Accies and the sure boot of Jack Anderson reduced Biggar’s lead to 1 point,

The visitors increased their lead on the 20th minute after quick ball from the scrum allowed No 13 Robbie Lavery to take full advantage of submissive Accies defending and go in for the score, the conversion was good.

Another attack deep into the Biggar 22 brought another penalty for the home side, again Accies” go to ” kicker ,Jack Anderson, duly obliged.

Accies captain Stewart Lamont was having a superb match , his lineout takes both on his own side’s ball and the opposition’s were allowing Accies to attack using the width of the pitch and his astute shepherding of the driving mauls was getting his side closer to the try line.

Biggar’s David Paterson was yellow carded on the 25th minute after he was penalised for a “tip Tackle” on Andy Duncan.

Teddy Rodger replaced Gordon Telfer at inside centre.

With time running out and Accies flinging everything at their opponents , Andy Duncan started a move in midfield , his long pass found Robert Hunter who outpaced the Biggar cover defence to score in the left corner.

With a few Accies supporters crossing their fingers up stepped Anderson , a look at the posts , deep breath , then bang straight between the uprights to put his side 2 points in front and in injury time.

Final Score

Accies 24 Biggar 22

This result might just be the catalyst Accies require to start moving up the league table and distance themselves away from the relegation zone. It was a totally different atmosphere in the clubhouse after the match.

Accies Team

A.Duncan,R,Hunter,R.Anderson,G.Telfer,R.Grayson,J.Anderson,B.Hunter,B.Hamilton,S.Campbell,

S.Docherty,E.Thomson,I.Lamont,C.Millar,S.Lamont,J.Thomson

National League 2 Rugby
Ardrossan Accies v West of Scotland
by Danny McGreish

The home side’s team sheet showed the return of Ross McDougall to partner young Ruaridh Anderson at centre.

In drizzly conditions West kicked off the match and for the initial 10 minutes they had the home side on the back foot as they dominated both possession and territory . They were putting together good phases of play , changing the point of attack and testing the home side’s defence. West were unlucky not to go in front after 5 minutes when a penalty attempt rebounded off the upright allowing Accies to clear.
Their pressure was eventually rewarded , a good lineout take by Mark Jenkinson allowed his pack to drive for the line , Accies were penalised and West moved the ball quickly for Jack Urquhart to score. The conversion was good to put them 7 points in front after 12 minutes .
Accies did manage to break into the West half and produce a couple of well constructed moves but as they drove to the try line the referee issued a rather harsh yellow card which sent captain Stuart Lamont to the sin bin.

The visitors used their numerical advantage to launch a sweeping move deep into the Accies 22 and only a superb try saving tackle by Callum McKechnie prevented a certain score.

West extended their lead on the 25th minute after tighthead prop Andy Love burst through the home defence to score his side’s second try. Sandy McCallum kicked the conversion.

With Accies now returned to full strength they were awarded a penalty, Jack Anderson’s attempt split the posts and opened his team’s account with 3 points.

The home side were having their best spell of the match and keeping their visitors contained inside their own half. Accies eventually scored after Ruaridh Anderson charged down an attempted clearance kick , West hoofed the ball into touch to concede an attacking lineout. A drive from the line resulted in Stuart Lamont going in for the try. The conversion was missed.

The first half ended with West kicking another penalty after the referee indicated that an Accies player did not release the ball after being tackled.

Half Time Score
Accies 8 West 17

Accies started the second half with a couple of try scoring opportunities , an Andy Duncan break was supported by Stuart Docherty who drove up the blind side , a ruck was formed and the ball recycled quickly but unfortunately it was ” spilled” giving the visitors a scrum. West’s Richard Tran put up a high box kick into the Accies half , the ball was gathered and Callum McKechnie attacked down the touchline. His pass inside found Ruaridh Anderson who executed the best of dummy passes to completely fool the covering defence and sprint in to score a very good try indeed. The conversion was missed.

Accies were beginning to be penalised with regularity and eventually the referee issued his second yellow card which sent full back Andy Duncan to the “naughty step” for 10 minutes.

Jamie McKee came off the Accies bench to bolster up the defence as West tried to capitalise on the home side’s reduced numbers but their defence was holding out. Accies loose head prop Ben Hamilton was a constant thorn to the West attacks as he used his strength to rip possession from his opponents at the breakdown.

When Accies returned to full strength they were immediately awarded a penalty , Jack Anderson put over a difficult kick to close the gap to 1 point with 5 minutes remaining.

With the clock running down Accies threw everything at the West defence, a break by McKee was supported by Ben Hamilton who carried into the opposition 22 but the referee judged the ball to have been delivered forward as the final pass was being made.

Final Score
Accies 16 West of Scotland 17

Accies will be desperately disappointed that they only got a losing bonus point from this game. Both teams were evenly matched but the two yellow cards handed West a considerable advantage . While a statistic of played 9, lost 9, makes depressing reading for the Memorial Field faithful , cutting out the mistakes and a bit of “rub of the green” should see them record the elusive first win.

National League Rugby
Ardrossan Accies v Aberdeenshire
by Danny McGreish

If you are a supporter of the Accies , you might not want to read further, as they again lost to record a statistic of played 7 lost 7.
The home side once again showed a change in personnel with both the Hunter brothers unavailable but Jack Anderson returning at 10 after a lengthy absence.

Anderson kicked off the match for the home side , playing towards the Laighdykes end.

For the first 10 minutes the visitors had their hosts penned back inside their 22 defending desperately, but a mistake in distribution by the Accies allowed full back Clough to score ,the conversion was missed. Straight from the restart Accies attempted a long miss pass but it rebounded off the intended receiver into the arms of No 14 Ndewere,who sprinted the entire length of the pitch to score, the conversion was good.

The home side managed to put their first points on the scoreboard after Anderson kicked a penalty after Aberdeenshire were “pinged ” for entering the ruck from an offside position.

The visitors were having the better of possession and had their opponents on the back foot , after a series of recycled play the ball was spread wide for Jamie Stephen to score,t he conversion was good to put the visitors on 19 points.

They further extended their lead on the half hour mark after Ndewere went in for their fourth and bonus point score, the conversion was good. An additional 3 points were added after Accies were penalised , Mark Ryan converted to put his side on 29 points.

Half Time score
Accies 3 Aberdeenshire 29

The second half started as the first period ended with Accies defending desperately , they were however holding their own in the scrums and Lamont and Jamie Thomson were taking good lineout ball , but they were spilling passes and the visitors were that bit better at the breakdown.

Aberdeenshire scored their 5th try after hooker Fulton finished off a well supported move, the conversion was good.

Accies eventually managed a try after Scott Campbell scored from a driving maul, Anderson kicked a difficult conversion to put the home side on 10 points.

Straight from the restart kick , Aberdeenshire scored again after Fulton sidestepped through poor defence to touch down, the conversion was good .

The home side were now having their best spell of the match as they laid siege to the visitors line, but several close pick up drives were being stopped desperately close to the try line. The visitors were being repeatedly penalised as they defended, eventually Accies scored , the ball was spread wide and Andy Duncan powered over for the try. Anderson kicked the conversion.

Final Score
Accies 17 Aberdeenshire 43

At the final whistle the better side deserved their victory , maybe not by a 26 point margin but a victory none the less. The first two scores were from Accies errors and should not have happened.

The home side are not particularly big so defence is paramount, also a little bit more aggression would not go amiss.

National League Rugby
Ardrossan Accies v Kelso R.F.C.
by Danny McGreish

The home side lost narrowly in the last minute of a thoroughly entertaining game that saw 11 try’s and 74 points being scored. When Kelso kicked to touch for the final whistle to be sounded , Accies players sank to their knees , despondent that victory had been snatched from them, despite putting in their best performance of the season.

On perfect conditions for playing rugby, Accies started the match through Robert Hunter who was filling the No 10 shirt today , he was partnered at scrum half by his brother Bruce. Gordon Telfer was filling in at centre rather than being in the pack and again both Ruairidh Anderson and Ruairidh Grayson were on from the start.

For the first twenty minutes of the half Accies dominated possession and territory as their pack drove into their opponents with a physicality that has been missing in the last few games. The back row of trio were competing and winning the battle at the breakdown , allowing Bruce Hunter to move the ball out for the backs to attack. The home side’s pressure was eventually rewarded when Andy Duncan and Calum McKechnie broke up the right hand side , good interpassing between both eventually saw Duncan power over for the try, the conversion was good by Bruce Hunter to put Accies 7 points in front after 15 minutes.

The home side should have gone further ahead 3 minutes later when Andy Duncan scored again but for some reason the try was disallowed by referee Alex Pratt but she awarded Accies a penalty instead.
On the 24th minute Kelso opened their account after outside centre Roberts intercepted an Accies pass and sprinted from the Halfway line to score, the conversion was missed. The visitors were beginning to get back into the game and they scored a second try on the 32nd minute when an Accies throw to the tail of the lineout was taken by Kelso , the ball was quickly transferred out and hooker Jack Chambers scored, Andrew Skeen kicked the conversion.

Kelso were now having their best spell of the match with both forwards and backs linking up well, they were putting together good phases of play as the ball was switched back and forth across the pitch stretching the home defence. They increased their lead further ,after a move which involved 5 phases of play resulted in Roberts again going over for the try.

On the 39th minute Kelso scored their 4th and bonus point score , an Accies kick failed to find touch , Kelso gathered and launched another move up the middle of the pitch, from a ruck, the ball was spread wide for winger Greg Ponton to score in the corner. The conversion was missed.

Accies player Calum McKechnie retired injured and was replaced by Jordan Paterson

Half Time score
Accies 7 Kelso 24

Accies scored 5 minutes into the second period after a loose ball was gathered by Marinkovic , the ball was quickly distributed through the hands for young Ruairidh Grayson to score in the corner, Robert Hunter converted a very difficult kick. 5 minutes later the home side scored again after an acrobatic take at the tail of the lineout released the ball along the backs, the drive to the line was finished by captain Stewart Lamont scoring, the conversion was missed.

The game was being played at pace as both sides were attempting to play fast open rugby, however, it was noticeable that some of Kelso’s big heavy forwards were beginning to struggle to adapt to the pace. Accies edged in front on the 12th minute of the half when Bruce Hunter finished off a well worked move to score his side’s 4th and bonus point score, brother Robert duly kicked the conversion .
Kelso regained the lead on the 24th minute , when after a series of pick up and drives at the line , the ball was switched to No 10 Andrew Skeen to score , he also converted.

Accies added another 3 poinst to their tally after Robert Hunter kicked a penalty to reduce Kelso’s lead to 2 points with 14 minutes remaining. They also had another chance to go in front but the penalty kick went narrowly past the upright.

With 5 minutes remaining Accies scored again after Ben Hamilton finished off a move which was instigated by Marinkovic , Hunter kicked the conversion to put his side on 36 points.

In the second minute of injury time Kelso scored their sixth try after Skeen put through a speculative grubber kick for winger Arran Jackson to gather and score, Skene kicked the conversion to give his side victory.

Final Score
Accies 36 Kelso 38

A desperately disappointing result for Accies but a thoroughly good game to watch , both sides produced an absorbing match where the final result was always in doubt right to the end . However , a vastly improved performance from the home side.

National League Rugby

Cartha R.F.C. v Ardrossan Accies

by Bill Nolan

Last Saturday at Dumbreck , Accies lost their fourth successive league game of the season to a home side that oozed confidence in running in a win of 38 – 3, yet the visitors deserved better , as they missed several scoring opportunities that might have put a different complexion on the final score. Physically , Accies were out-muscled in the scrums and driving mauls and lost three early scores in the opening 15 minutes. Thereafter , Accies were playing catch-up rugby and never looked like recovering from that disastrous opening spell.

Despite being league leaders by the end of the game, Cartha were not as far ahead as the score would suggest. Some poor decision making in possible scoring positions, particularly in the final quarter, resulted in the visitors only recording 3 points for their efforts. The main difference was that Cartha took their chances , punished Accies errors and were the more confident of the two sides. The home side did the simple things well while the visitors looked uncertain , lacked physicality , yet managed to dominate the line-outs , due to accurate throwing, in very arduous conditions.

Accies were found wanting in speed of distribution that often led to isolation , they also lacked drive by the forwards in attacking opposition ball in the immediate post -tackle area. In contrast, any 50/50 ball was quickly turned over by Cartha putting pressure on the Accies defence.

Accies are a relatively young and not particularly big side , almost in a transition stage. What they lack in physicality, they have to compensate with improved technique, especially at scrum time and defending driving mauls . Perhaps some enhanced defensive awareness of the quality that they demonstrated in the earlier round of the B.T. cup would not go amiss , particularly as their next opponents at the Memorial Field are Kelso, who have a big pack . but It doesn’t mean that they can’t be stopped in their tracks by low-level tackling and enhanced scrummaging.

Accies are not a bad side, but some added aggression would enhance confidence into a team that seems somewhat despondent, however , there is still time to turn things around before the gap between the top of the league and the lower placings becomes too much. The Accies really need more support to inspire confidence and encourage the team to start achieving again.

Above the exit of the home dressing room at one of the country’s most successful football clubs, the manager- himself no shrinking violet- placed a sign that read “Intimidate”,”Dominate” and “Celebrate”, simple psychology that worked for years , if Accies can adopt the same mental attitude against Kelso , well , you never know.

Final Score
Cartha 38 Accies 3

National League Rugby
Ardrossan Accies v Peebles R.F.C.
by Danny McGreish

The home side’s team sheet showed a debut start for 17 year old Ruairidh Anderson on the right wing, Jordan Paterson on the left and several other positional changes in the backs.  Accies were hoping to get a first win in their league campaign but Peebles were to provide a stern test as a big physical pack provided a platform for their speedy backline to perform off.

Stuart Lewis kicked off the match for Accies, the ball was caught and put back to Greg Raeburn to kick to touch for the first lineout. Peebles came close to scoring on the 5th minute, Raeburn fed inside to his left wing who burst deep into the home 22 ,fortunately for the Accies defence the final scoring pass was spilled allowing the danger to be cleared.

With the home side beginning to look vulnerable as the visitors enjoyed both possessional and territorial advantage, it was only a matter of time until they scored. From a scrum ,the ball was transferred wide for No 15 Steve Hamilton to go over for the try, the conversion was missed.

Peebles had the home side on the back foot and penned inside their own half as they switched play repeatedly, stretching the Accies defence by moving the ball wide at every opportunity .
On the 18th minute Peebles increased their lead after Corey Togia finished off a driving maul from a 5 meter lineout, the conversion was good.

Accies did have a chance to open their account on the 20th minute when they had an attacking lineout but the throw went over the back of the line and the opportunity lost.

Accies did score on the 22nd minute after Andy Duncan intercepted a long pass by Peebles to go in for the try, Stuart Lewis converted.
Straight from the restart kick the home side was penalised , up stepped Raeburn to add another 3 points to his team score.

Accies were beginning to get more possession but were guilty of poor handling and over- elaborate passes. Peebles further extended their lead when an Accies spilled ball was snatched by an opposition defender, then quickly transferred out for David Anderson to score. Again the assured boot of Greg Raeburn added the conversion.

5 minutes from the break Andy Duncan scored again for Accies after he collected the ball 30 metres out and burst through tackles to score. The conversion was good.

Half time score
Accies 14 Peebles 22

Accies started the second half with Gordon Telfer,Bruce Hunter,Jimmy Crieff and Ruairidh Grayson comming off the replacement bench.

2 minutes into the half Raeburn again added another 3 points when he put over a penalty after Accies were “pinged” for not releasing in the tackle.

The home side were beginning to press the opposition and from a well rehearsed pick up from the base of a scrum captain Stuart Lamont drove over for the try, the conversion was missed.

Accies came close to scoring again when a very good handling move involving forwards and backs was finished off by Andy Duncan going over in the corner, but the touch judge called for a foot in touch and the try disallowed.

The home side did eventually score after a Robert Hunter break was supported by Ben Hamilton , his drive to the try line was stopped short but Hunter was there to finish off the move that he had started, the conversion was good. Accies were now in front and had a bonus point score.

With 12 minutes remaining and Accies having their best spell of the match, they should have managed the rest of the game- time to get a result , but instead they imploded as very poor tackling allowed Peebles to run in 4 quick tries from James King (2)Scott Stoddard and Ryan McConnell , all of which were converted by Greg Raeburn.

Final Score
Accies 26 Peebles 53.

On the final whistle Peebles deserved their win as they were the better of the two sides overall but the margin of 27points was rather flattering caused by ineffective tackles. Trying to shoulder tackle much taller opponents doesn’t work , it has to be low and around the legs as demonstrated by the Accies youngest player in the first half.

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