Boroughmuir Magic 2nds v Stirling County 2nds
Saturday 3rd February
With the first game of the Six Nations kicking off at 2.15 it was an early KO for the Magic 2s.
Originally, we thought 'Thank You SRU' for not allowing us to take the full day to watch our prized national team take on Wales and making us play this re-arranged fixture in the morning.
However, when we walked into the not so busy clubhouse to see the scoreline after 15mins we started to think maybe we should have just gone with a 2pm KO as usual!!
The build up through the last two weeks for the Magic 2s has been all about the 1st XV and rightly so as we find ourselves in a dog fight. We were happy to 'lend them' two of out outstanding payers in Rory Scott and Rob Ure to help them climb out the relegation zone....which they are now startling to do. Two players out meant two new players in and Mike Wilson at stand-off and Arran Wilson in the back row are not bad understudies to have.
A warm welcome for the Magic 2s was firstly in the form of the local Pipe Band. This was arranged to not only give some practice to the youth band but also to show that all levels of rugby are very much appreciated and respected here at Meggetland. The second welcome came 1min 30 seconds in when the Stirling winger came off his right wing in the midfield and cruised through to show that they meant business and wanted to stay ahead of us on the league.
It took a few minutes for Muir to settle in but when they did they showed some class. Jack Hamilton with a good probing kick and Callum McDevitt with a little pick and go got us front-foot ball then Hamilton kicked deep for the speedy and elusive Michael Jamieson to race onto from 40m and beat the defence to the touch down. Wilson missed the conversion, but made up for it with a lovely banana kick later in the match (he told me to say).
Seven minutes later Stirling kicked to touch just inside our 10m line. Off the top ball, Hamilton hit Wilson and he put McDevitt through a gap and he rampaged 35m with Coulter and Jamieson in support. A perfectly timed pass put Jamieson through for his 2nd dot down for a coaches dream of a text book, training ground try. Wilson Converted to make it 12-7.
Grant Innes has had a good season and has grown week on week and this was by far his best game of the season with some excellent defensive work and some strong, straight and hard running lines. On the 20min mark it was his turn to get on the score sheet. The hardworking pack held the scrum on the opposition 5m line, the ball squirted out the back, Hamilton gathered, straightened and looked as if he was going into contact which the 10 also thought a he offloaded deftly to Innes running a grate line and he cruised through untouched. Wilson got the 2 points again.
Stirling were not giving up and camped in the Muir 22m for the next 8-10 mins but some strong defence and Hamilton clearance kicks saw the danger eradicated. Again, they came back but Wilson cleared with a cracker of a left boot. A quick line-out from Stirling did not see the line speed from Innes and Jamieson on the far side quash them after one pass. Young Arran Wilson got turnover ball and we were in the Stirling half again. The last few minutes saw us in the Stirling 22 and we opted for 3 points to go in 22-7 up.
The half time talk was easy for the coach. More of the same with a bit of tightening up around the fringes and keep possession, play with smiles and have confidence to throw the ball around.
Stirling may have been feeling the pressure as they kicked straight out from the start.. We made it to the Stirling 5m line and good defence from Stirling saw a turnover and clearance kick. Hamilton was back with the kick-chase and Jamieson was bursting through again only for the 15 to gather and save the day. Our scrum then obliterated theirs but the referee deemed us going forward 7 metres with possession 'unfair' and they got a Penalty!!
Stirling were not giving up but never really looked like they could cope with our pressure in most areas of the park. We pinned them back repeatedly and on the 29th minute mark Gavin Welsh got the ball in a little space.
Welsh never started the game as he had a bit of car trouble but his engines were at full throttle when he ran round the centres and winger to touch down for Tom Barker to step up and take the conversion. It was quite possibly the worst kick this coach has seen since the England football team took a penalty against Germany!
With the game well and truly won and a bonus point in the bag Man of the Match Michael 'MJ' Jamieson rounded the game off with a hat-trick. It was a ruck 12m out from the Stirling line and he popped out the other side and cantered in for Scott Richards to convert.34 -7 and the 1st team winning 47-5 it was a good day for Boroughmuir.
Once again we had 7 players that are 18yr old in this squad with 5 of them in the back line.. It has been great to watch them learn and grow and with 4 ore league games to go we are aiming to get more players promoted to 1st team and age grade rugby and push for 3rd or 4th in the league standings.
- The pipe band creating a guard of honour and a bit of noise for us to walk out onto the pitch.
- Grant Innes playing his best game so far and showing a good partnership in the centre with MJ.
- Hamilton making good decisions and turning the defence constantly
- McDevitt, Coulter and Arran Wilson busy in the back row all day.
- 'Old boy' Ross Young lasting almost a full game and showing his composure, presence and abilities are very much still in abundance.
- The rest of the squad from 1 - 20 showed a strong mindset and willingness to help as a squad and that rugby is all about the team performance. Get the team 'stuff' right and the individuals will shine.
The final word goes to the hat-trick hero Michael Jamieson. He scored three tries but his all round game was outstanding. He ran hard, defended well, chased like a man possessed and did it all with control. a Well deserved MOM award.
Renton, Barker, Jamieson, Innes, Henderson, Wilson, Hamilton, Young, Henderson, Robinson (cpt), Troxler, Krause, Wilson, Coulter, McDevitt
Subs - all used - Wildgoose, Davidson, Dandie, Richards, Welsh
Match report complied by AK.