Biggar Colts back to their best at Hddington
Haddington/Preston Lodge 0pts v Biggar Colts 43pts
Edinburgh District Under 18 Shield Pool B
Progress is getting back up after you have fallen, learning why you fell before, and avoiding going the same route. Keep progressing.
This is exactly what the boys did after the disappointment of last week at Melrose. They arrived at training during the week knowing they had areas to work on and put in the effort.
This they did, put it into practice and then simply moved forward putting it into effect on Saturday with an all round clinical performance against Haddington/Preston Lodge , winning convincingly 43 points to 0 points in the Edinburgh Shield.
Early on from a line out, ball secured and driven by a determined pack of forwards who knew they needed to get back to showing their potential as did the backs. Ball was moved out to Peter Steel who ran hard getting over the game line, which then turned into a well formed ruck for Stuart Affleck to pick and go round the side unopposed to score under the posts for a try converted by Gregor Stewart
Biggar were getting into their stride and were playing with some great structure to their game. Andrew Orr found space 20 yards out and went through the middle with Haddington defence nowhere to be seen. Gregor Stewart added the conversion
Bigger backs were also getting into their game stringing some good passes together with Martin Hunter making a good run down the wing with some great support play from Craig Stewart who took the pass and went in for a nice try converted by Gregor.
With accuracy and confidence growing Biggar started to play some lovely rugby with the forwards creating a platform for the backs to exploit the spaces in the Haddington back line. One move in particular, where the Biggar pack was in control was clean ball from James Barr to Gregor Stewart who showed real class to grubber kick through the Haddington defence and with Biggar chasing hard , the ever present Stuart Affleck scooped the ball up and chipped the Haddington winger only to be beaten to the ball by the Haddington Full back to prevent try of the season (according to Muz and Stuart).
Good slick handling followed with Richard Morgan showing great pace and strength to score in the corner.
Craig Stewart was showing his ability and actually had real pace for a big athletic guy !!!! with a 30yd surge upfield and as usual Andrew Orr was up in support to receive the offload for a fine score.
From the kick off the ball was received and passed to Ross Jackson who rampaged up the field handing off Haddington defenders then cleverly giving a dummy pass to score a lovely individual try – well deserved . Gregor Stewart converted.
Thomas Steel scored also which was reward for a day when he showed his all round ability with a stirring and thriving performance in the 2nd half in the second row.
Final Score – Haddington/Preston Lodge 0 points to Biggar 43points.
The performance was so much improved from the previous week but it was simply down to the boys themselves who turned it round starting with their effort and commitment at training. They knew they had it within them.
Nest Saturday is a friendly at home against Gala Wanderers but it may change depending on weather. Keep you posted.
Story date: 28/01/2015
Weather affecting this weeknds fixtures AGAIN!!
As of Friday lunchtime with plenty of snow lying in Biggar, and very cold temperatures last night and forecast, the situation is:
1st XV vs Stew Mel at Home has been canceled
2nd XV due play Away at Kelso subject to an 8am pitch inspection
Colts due to pay a friendly at home (showfield) subject to a pitch inspection - unlikely due to weather but awaiting an update
U18 Girls due to play Brewin Dolphin cup match at home on Saturday - unlikely due to weather but awaiting an update
U16 trying for the 3rd time to play their National Bowl 1/4 final against Garnock, on Sunday, are looking for somewhere to play in case Biggar is frozen and covered in snow
U15 Girls due to play Ayr in a Brewin Dolphin cup match, awaiting update but Ayr is clear of snow.
Our thoughts are all with Johnny, his wife Brenda and family as Johhny is currently being very well looked after in the Stroke Unit at Wishaw General, he is reported to be recovering, his voice has returned along with his sense of humour but is still quite poorly, he needs more time to recuperate before being released. The family are grateful for all the good wishes and get well messages they have received and once we know more we will post an update on the website as we know a lot of people are keen to track his progress.
Story date: 27/01/2015
Biggar Colts win a bruising encounter
Portobello/Ross High Colts 24pts v Biggar Colts 26pts
Edinburgh District Under 18 Shield Pool B
The secret of Biggar Colts as in the previous year is that this group of boys never know when to give up. Even with 6 minutes to go and behind by 10 points , this group of boys showed their belief in each other and pulled off an excellent win by 26 points to 24 points in the Shield Competition.
Story date: 21/12/2014
Portobello and Ross High have recently merged for the Shield and on Saturday they were bolstered with four Watson's School 1st team players who are registered to Portobello. This team was going to be and were formidable opposition in a enthralling encounter
From the start Porty/Ross High showed some strong running and were strong physically. Their forwards won good ball and this allowed their backs to make constant ground with their good handling and speed. Biggar were not coping with them coming through the middle and with tackles being missed , Porty/Ross put away 2 early tries to make Biggar realise that they had to put their game into place. This they did eventually and with half backs James Barr and Gregor Stewart showing good quick hands going up the blind side they were able to release Ross Jackson for a try.
Biggar were now coming back into the game but too often poor handling and strong counter rucking by Porty/Ross who thwarted many attacks . However Biggar kept at it and no more than Andrew Orr who lead from the front all day. It was becoming a bruising encounter with Biggar getting well tackled throughout the game.
Half time – Porty/Ross High 10 points to Biggar 5 points
Biggar had a strong wind and sun behind them which was well utilised by Gregor Stewart who constantly forced the opposition to turn round and this was gaining Biggar the upper hand.
With the forwards now gaining good ground, William Grieve after a period of good work scored a try which was converted by Gregor Stewart.
Surely Biggar were now in control.
No, with a lapse in concentration Porty/Ross High took a quick tap from a penalty and their Number 8 was able to stride 60 yards up the pitch to move them ahead.
Biggar had to resettle and when they did launch an attack a loose pass was intercepted for their impressive second row to also stride up the pitch to put Porty/Ross High 12 points ahead.
Well what do you do now?.
Do you panic or just put your heads down. No this group of boys realised they were in this together and “ Alone they could do so little; together they could do so much” - And they did.
They stuck to the task and put some great phase play together and with the ball moved out to the backs, young Andrew Jardine cut back inside to go over for a try converted by Gregor Stewart.
Biggar then launched attack after attack and thought they had got another try but it was pulled back as the linesman had his flag up. Not down hearted they stuck to their task. Gregor Stewart put a big kick down field to which Liam McCarry chased and took the ball at speed and made his way to the line to be brought down short but on hand was Mark Ewart to take the final pass and go over.
Gregor Stewart then had the conversion to win the game and he did so but managed to make everyone suffer heart attacks as it came of the post before going over. However it was a relief that Gregor had according to him had it all planned ????????????.
That was it , Biggar has won a 1st class game of rugby between two teams who both showed great level of skills and determination.
What a squad effort and they all knew they had been in a game.
“The greater the loyalty of a group toward the group, the greater is the motivation among the members to achieve the goals of the group, and the greater the probability that the group will achieve its goals.”
Coaches Ian Barr, David Murray and Gavin Hill could not have been more proud watching the team on Saturday. Looking forward to the New Year.
Persistence can change failure into extraordinary achievement.
No players of the day, its was the squad. Andrew Orr, Ryan Ferguson, Mark Ewart, Mark Harrison, William Grieve, Stuart Affleck, Ross Jackson, Kyle Anderson. James Barr, Gregor Stewart, Simon Denholm, Calum Wesencraft, Tom Steele, Martin Hunter, Richard Morgan, Andrew Jardine, Liam McCarry and Craig Allison
Colts power past Lasswade
Lasswade Colts 5pts v Biggar Colts 57pts
Edinburgh District under 18 League
What makes a team special is not just what they have to gain, but what they feel there is to lose.
Story date: 30/11/2014
Biggar Colts made sure they did not slip up in their final league game against Lasswade winning 57 points to 5 points and so securing the runners up spot in the Edinburgh league and entry into the National Bowl.
Yes they did not win it this year but “trophies just carry dust anyway. Memories last forever” and they will have many of these as this squad of players really do demonstrate everything that is good about team work and friendship.
They know that “One man can be a crucial ingredient on a team, but one man cannot make a team”. All 15 of the boys that travelled made the difference. Pity some just never turned up for the game.
On a great day for running rugby Biggar put in a dominant but at times workmanlike performance against a team who never gave up at any time.
From the start Biggar gained the upper hand showing good hands by the backs to put Richard Morgan in the corner for an unconverted try.
Another try was shortly followed up with a solid platform being laid by the forwards to then allow the ball to be put out the backs to where Ross Jackson was on hand to go up the wing for another try converted by Simon Denholm. Biggar in this period put some excellent plays together and were slick, powerful and intelligent in their play.
But as seen before they failed to fully capitalise on it and allowed Lasswade back into the game and for some 15 minutes the game was played in the middle of the park with little if any chances between the 2 teams.
Eventually an opportunity arose and James Barr put some quick ball out to Gregor Stewart who linked well with William Grieve who continually impresses to go over from 30 yards out for a try converted by Simon Denholm.
This was then followed up with a break made by some powerful running by Peter Steele who broke through up the field to be stopped but it was Richard Morgan on hand to take the pass and go over for a try converted by James Barr.
The next try was a hall mark of the tries scored by Ross Jackson who can take the ball quickly at the base of scrums and power up the field to score tries. This was converted by Simon Denholm.
Then the player of the 1st half , Craig Stewart who had been excelling all round the park took the ball at speed and powered through Lasswade defence , even breaking tackles with a pirouette (that's spinning round to others ) then continuing on his way to score from some 60 yards out with the try converted again by Simon Denholm.
Before half time Biggar were severely tested with Lasswade for some 5 minutes trying to power over the line from close range but at all times , the Biggar boys held firm with some excellent defence that really showed the commitment these boys have.
Yes there may be one or two smaller players in the forwards but it does not stop them contributing to the defence. “It is not the size of a man but the size of his heart that matters”.
Half time : Lasswade 0pts to Biggar 40 points
This was not going to be the walk over thought by some as Lasswade at no time dropped their heads and they showed more in their character in losing than ,many others have in winning.
Lasswade never laid down and worked at finding a way back into the game and often testing the Biggar defence. William Grieve did find a gap and showed pace to go on a big run and score .
Lasswade came back in to the game and exploited the blindside to go over for their score.
The game then descended into an even contest but eventually chances were taken with William Grieve continuing to show his all round skills to go in for his 3rd try which was converted by Simon Denholm. The last try of the game was a delight to watch as a set move practised on the training pitch was impeccably converted to then be put away by Liam McCarry out on the wing .
Final Score : Lasswade 5 points to Biggar 57points
This was good performance by Biggar and these boys continue to impress everyone and again as last year, the Colts really are playing some great rugby.
Much credit has to be given to Lasswade who at all times never gave up. Lasswade to many did not lose this as “You're never a loser until you quit trying and they never did".
Coaches Barr, Murray and Hill are proud of the Biggar boys.
The colts will now arrange some friendlies before the Bowl and Edinburgh Cup Starts which includes Boroughmuir and Currie back in the mix.
Squad: Craig Stewart, Ryan Ferguson, Jack Court, Mark Ewart, Andrew Orr, William Grieve, Ross Jackson , Mark Harrison, Stuart Affleck, James Barr, Gregor Stewart, Peter Steele, Simon Denholm, Martin Hunter, Liam McCarry, Craig Allison and Richard Morgan.
Biggar Colts too strong for Ross High Colts Select
Biggar Colts 70pts v Ross High Colts 7pts
Edinburgh District under 18 League
Story date: 17/11/2014
Biggar Colts took to the field on Saturday knowing they had already won the game as Ross High conceded, having arrived with only 9 players.
However with Biggar having 21 players, there was enough for a game and so a match was played in good spirit and to a high level. Head Coach Barr made sure that Ross High got a good mix of the Biggar squad players to try and match the game up.
Indeed they did from the start and it was Ross High who went a try up which made Biggar realise that they were in a game and they needed to be organised.
Over time they did and it was Biggar who took full control of the game and at the end of the day managed to score 12 tries to 1 from Ross High even when they had some of the more senior Biggar boys.
Scorers - Liam McCarry with 3 tries, Stuart Affleck (3), William Grieve (2), Ross Jackson (2), Craig Stewart (1) and Andrew Orr (1). Simon Denholm put 4 conversions over and Ryan Ferguson with 1 conversion.
Martin Hunter playing for Ross High and Liam McCarry were the pick of the backs while in the forwards Andrew Orr and William Grieve dominated supported by Stuart Affleck and Craig Stewart.
Credit has to be given to Ross High for making the trip down and so allowing the game to go ahead which all the players benefited from.
Biggar will have learnt that no matter how far they are in front a structure still needs to be kept.
Great to see Jack Court back putting in some fine tackles and also under 16 players Douglas Hill and Rory McGinn who easily blended in.
Biggar Colts power past Forrester/ Currie
Forrester/ Currie Colts 5pts v Biggar Colts 39pts
Edinburgh District under 18 League
Doing the tough things sets winners apart from losers.” Biggar Colts showed that by continuing to work on their game and put every effort in the training pitch that they are a match for any team.
On Saturday Biggar Colts travelled to take on a combined Forrester/Currie team bolstered by a substantial number of Currie Colts as their National League game was cancelled. Biggar however showed they have nothing to fear and comfortably won by 39 points to 5 points at Malleny Park.
It was probably one of the best all round team performances with all the squad players making an impact and nobody shirking their responsibilities by playing for each other .
“The nice thing about teamwork is that you always have others on your side”.
Both Biggar and Forrester / Currie started the game at a frenetic pace with both having opportunities and putting in some excellent defensive work.
Decisions were being made which puzzled both teams and this continued for some time. However Biggar kept at Forrester/ Currie and eventually broke through with Andrew Orr finding a gap to go through for an unconverted try. It was taking time to break the opposition down but Biggar kept at their task and were giving no ground. From a lineout Ross Jackson positioned himself to go through the middle for a great score and extend the lead with the conversion by Simon Denholm.
Forrester /Currie continued to keep coming at Biggar but the boys held firm and were putting in some big hits with both centres Simon Denholm and Peter Steele showing excellent defensive work along with the ever present forwards who continue to strangle attacks against them.
The backs were showing good speed and lining running and with some precise passing out by the backs , Richard Morgan came into the line at speed and faked a pass outside to cleverly go in for another try.
Half Time – Forrester / Currie 0 pts v Biggar 17pts
Biggar knew they would need to hold firm a the start of the 2nd half. However it was Biggar who took the initiative of not allowing them in and Ross Jackson picked up a the back of the scrum and went over for a powerful score that allowed Biggar to take control.
A notable feature of the 2nd half was the excellent tackling throughout the team with notable hits going in from Tom Steele, Martin Hunter and Gregor Stewart.
Half backs Gregor Stewart and James Barr were taking full control which was totally strangling Forrester / Currie who could not match the piercing kicks of Gregor which forced them to keep turning round.
Another strong part was the the lineout and rucking which was impressive to see and had been clearly been worked on at training.
The forwards were now dominating and Andrew Orr took the opportunity to go over for his 2nd .
Another good move saw the very impressive Peter Steele go in for a try and then the last try fell to pick of the forwards Andrew Orr for his third score which was converted by Gregor Stewart.
Great all round performance with others such as Stuart Affleck, William Grieve and Craig Stewart having a high work rate for the team.
Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much”
Next week Saturday is a home league game against Ross High with a 1pm kick off.
Story date: 10/11/2014
Biggar Colts overcome Portobello
Biggar Colts 34pts v Portobello Colts 7pts
Edinburgh District under 18 League
The biggest challenge is continuing on the same path. Its easy to become complacent from the success you've had.
Story date: 02/11/2014
There is no doubt that Biggar Colts did not take to the pitch with the correct mindset and it was not until the 2nd half of the league game that they got their rhythm which ended up with a comfortable win for the Colts by 34 points to 7 points against Portobello.
From the start Biggar were caught sleeping and the Portobello backs capitalised with their centre breaking cleanly through the Biggar defence to go over for a converted try. The ball at kick off and restarts was not being taken and there was a general lack of focus and structure early on.
After some strong words from Head Coach Barr, Biggar with the wind behind them started to get back in the game and they did well with Calum Wesencraft showing some strong running to go over with an unconverted try.
Indeed, following on from this it was Calum again who showed his improvement at centre with a clean take from a move to go over for another try to put Biggar ahead. Both centres Peter Steele and Calum were causing their opposition problems due to their strong attacking play and excellent tackling.
Straight from the start the forwards had now come into the game and Mark Ewart powered up the park to offload to William Grieve who showed his speed and good hands to go over to further extend the lead. Along with William Grieve other forwards in Stuart Affleck , Ross Jackson, Andrew Orr and Mark Ewart were making distance and problems due to their strong running and ever presence. Mark Harrison was put into the forwards and was making some great defensive hits.
Biggar were now showing the level of skill previously shown in games and were in control. However too much confidence was at times being shown with the backs wanting to run out of their own 22 and continually being caught which created their own problems by failing to kick downfield.
When they did kick James Barr was putting in some big distances to put Portobello on the back foot much to the relief of the team.
The backs were when required putting some moves into play and it was from this that created a gap for Calum Wesencraft to go straight through again for a score converted by James Barr.
With Biggar showing domination the ball was moved out to Richard Morgan who showed tremendous speed and ability to go in for a score in the corner with little if any space available.
Half Time – Biggar Colts 27 points to Portobello 7 points
It was the 2nd half with Biggar facing the wind that they showed their best rugby with some tight control up the middle so starving Portobello from any ball and opportunities.
The only score of the 2nd half was taken by the ever present Ross Jackson who stormed over for a try converted by James Barr.
When Biggar did get the chance they were making distance up the park but often it was the last pass that was going astray.
At times nobody was with Andrew Orr when he was running with ball as simply they had no clue where he was going !!!!.
Biggar kept the game under control but the game was cut short with a serious injury to Portobello player and their numbers were down to 13 at that point.
Overall a strong performance but concentration and focus struggled early on and this will be addressed.
Please Please make every effort to attend training and turn up for games as numbers are again getting lower for match day.
Next week it is an away tie against Currie/Forresters
Biggar Colts crush Dunbar
Dunbar Colts 0pts v Biggar Colts 95pts
Edinburgh District under 18 League
For the 2nd time in five weeks , Biggar Colts travelled to Dunbar to play in the Edinburgh League. Biggar previously won the encounter 79 points to nil but after a league restructure , the boys were asked to play again and this time on Saturday convincingly beat Dunbar by 95 points to nil.
The colts have had some big wins this year and often very little is taken from these games apart from the fact that the boys have a great spirit in the team.
But those teams who are suffering these defeats may well learn more from losing in that they learn to keep going . Dunbar never put their heads down and showed that the greatest test of courage was that they beared defeat without losing heart and credit has to be given to them. If all teams showed the spirit that Dunbar showed then it might just be a different league we are in.
Biggar scored 15 tries – Mark Ewart (2), Ross Jackson (2), Richard Morgan(2), Stuart Affleck (2), Peter Steele (2), Andrew Orr (3), Craig Stewart (1) and Scott Thomson (1) .
James Barr had a very impressive kicking display in strong wind conditions to put 9 conversions over with Mark Ewart putting 1 over.
Strong features of the game was the forwards power and strength, backs giving good clean ball through the line and some notable players actually passing and offloading the ball effectively rather than taking too much on
Next week is a home league game against Portobello with 1pm kick off.
Story date: 27/10/2014
Biggar Colts comfortably beat Haddington
Biggar Colts 46pts v Haddington/Preston Lodge Colts 0pts
Quitters never win, Winners never quit"
No matter how many friendly games Biggar Colts play the enthusiasm never dwindles and this was shown again when they hosted newly merged Haddington/Preston Lodge Colts at Hartreemill resulting in a comfortable 46 points to 0 points win.
For the 1st time this season the game started in very wet conditions but this did not hold Biggar back in launching early attacks towards Haddington who were simply going to find it hard to contain the Biggar forwards.
Within the 1st few minutes the ball had been passed to the rampaging Craig Stewart who took the ball close to the line to bundle over for a try which was converted by Gregor Stewart.
The Biggar forwards especially Ross Jackson, Mark Ewart and Andrew Orr were making ground and keeping it tight due to the conditions.
At times when in position the ball was being moved out to the backs to make ground and this resulted in a try by Calum Wesencraft again converted by Gregor.
Martin Hunter followed up with a try where the ball was moved out right along the back line. Biggar could have gone further ahead but too often last passes were not being given or poor timing of the pass was too late.
This problem arose too often but when it was corrected then there was always opportunities which were being taken. William Grieve who is proving to be a very athletic all round player continually showed great agility and speed which culminated in two tries for him which both was a result of his ever presence and ability.
Stuart Affleck who was enjoying his afternoon at centre!!!! rounded off another good move to power over outwide.
A notable feature of the 2nd half was the skills showed by Liam McCarry in receiving high ball and then his quick turn of pace to make good yards and he was unlucky not to score.
However althoguh not a game that suited the backs they did at times show some good attacking skills but often were not running at speed to be fully effective. More work on this I fear.
The next try was a bit of brilliance. My match notes were too wet to read due to the weather but according to Jack Foster he took the ball at speed in his own 22 and ran through a solid defence to go right up to the Haddington line to where he gave a reverse pass to Stevie Campbell who had managed to keep up with him.?????
The last score of the day was left to Craig Stewart who took the ball at pace from a ball popped up to him at the back of the ruck and ran through the defence to score a well taken try which was well converted by Simon Denholm.
Full time – Biggar Colts 46 point to Haddington 0 points.
The rugby shown was far better than could have been imagined at kick off but both teams stuck to their task to give a good game of rugby.
Next week is a league game against Dunbar away. Details to follow
Story date: 20/10/2014
Biggar Colts topple Dumfries Colts
Biggar Colts 38pts v Dumfries Colts 20pts
The nice thing about teamwork is that you always have others on your side.”
Biggar Colts continue to have a tremendous team spirit both on and off the pitch and this is brining the boys together to make sure when they play, that it is for each other and not just themselves.
Teamwork: Simply stated, it is less me and more we.
Biggar again played a friendly against Dumfries Colts who are in the National League and last year defeated Biggar.
Biggar gave starts to John McOuat, Fraser Wilson and Fraser Prentice to give them they game time they deserve and they showed up well in this hard worked win against Dumfries at Hartree by 38 points to 20 points.
The game started with an evenly contested opening period and it was Dumfries who took the lead with a neatly struck penalty. It was not long after that the talented Mark Ewart playing in the centre stormed over to start giving Biggar the upper hand and this was further stretched with Andrew Orr going in soon after. With Biggar now dominating Craig Stewart the powerhouse made a clean break up the middle and when caught short of the line , popped a lovely pass to Ross Jackson to go over for a converted try by Gregor Stewart.
Biggar could have gone further ahead but at times opportunities were not being seized by players to hit up and too often it was being left to the same individuals to do this work. James Barr at scrum half was getting good ball but often the opportunity was not taken to hit up from the opportunity.
Gregor Stewart at stand off was showing command and was able to give good ball to Mark Ewart. Out on the wing Ryan Kearney made some great runs showing his ability and quickness.
Rucking was going well and it was especially due to the workrate of Kyle Anderson who continually thwarted the threat of the Dumfries pack counter rucking and along with Andrew Orr caused them problems in holding up players in the rucks so allowing Biggar to have the input with next scrum .
As with the previous week, Biggar failed to push away with more points and it was the Dumfries pack who brought their team back into the game with some excellent hard running but more importantly their ability to offload in the tackle which caused some problems for Biggar and their 1st try was a result of this.
Half time -Biggar Colts 17 points to Dumfries 10 points
Biggar knew they had to get the advantage back up and this they did , straight form the restart when Richard Morgan fielded a kick into his own half and then showed great speed and angle running to go over for a converted try. Richard was causing problems for Dumfries when they chose to kick towards him and continually he made good distance. Biggar went further ahead with Ross Jackson (now top try scorer) finished off a great play involving many hands to go over for another converted try by Gregor Stewart.
Ross was making good yards from picks ups a the scrum and was taking a few players before they stopped him. In the backs Mark Ewart was causing Dumfries problems due to his tremendous strong running.
William Grieve back after injury was always on hand to link the forwards up with the backs showing clever hands and turn of pace.
But again Dumfries came back in with some power play to narrow the gap before the ever fresh Stuart Affleck rounded off the game with the last try of the game.
Full time – Biggar Colts 38 points to Dumfries 20points.
Biggar have now beaten 4 teams who are in the National league.
Story date: 12/10/2014
Biggar find these games so valuable while the Edinburgh league which they are in struggles to get teams to fulfil fixtures.
Biggar stuck in well but at times concentration and focus was not at the usual level. Many areas will be worked on at training such as restarts where Biggar won few if any. But the boys continue to work on areas needing addressed and will seek to improve.
Next week is meant to be Dunbar away but confirmation will be given through the week .
Biggar Colts suffer crucial defeat
Musselburgh Colts 42pts v Biggar Colts 36pts
Edinburgh and District Under 18 League
Biggar Colts suffered their 1st defeat of the season but it was a crucial defeat as it impacts on them being able to go through to the National Cup , losing out to Musselburgh who will likely take that spot and the Edinburgh League title.
These two teams are arguably the best in the league and with so many cancelled games there will be not much chance to regain the top spot.
Defeat is not the worst of failures. Not to have tried is the true failure as both teams put in a almighty display with the game in the balance up to the final whistle.
It was evident early on in the game that although Biggar were going to dominate up front , the Musselburgh backs were if given ball going to have the ability to cause significant damage and this they did.
It took 15 minutes before the 1st score of the game. Musselburgh spilled ball which was quickly seized on by Peter Steele who then offloaded to Mark Harrison to go in the corner for an unconverted try.
Biggar then had to go into defence which they have not been used to over the last few weeks and it was the big Musselburgh centre who broke through the defence to then go over inbetween the posts. This centre along with others was going to cause problems all afternoon.
But Biggar knew to keep it amongst the forward and use the strong runners in Mark Ewart, Ross Jackson and Andrew Orr. This they did to good effect and were rewarded with a try to Mark Ewart who continues to improve and impress stormed over for a converted try put over by Gregor Stewart.
Shortly following this Musselburgh took their turn and their centre again broke through by palming his opposite number off and he duly stormed over from half way.
Again Mark Ewart responded in his usual way with a converted try by Gregor Stewart.
This game was now at a high intensity and both teams were taking and putting in some big hits to neutralise each other.
Musselburgh were awarded a penalty which was kicked to go into the lead. But in this see-saw game it was Biggar's turn and it was seized by Scott Thomson who was at then end of a period of play where the Biggar backs showed good hands to put Scott in the corner.
That try gave the Biggar backs some confidence and just outside their own 22 , James Barr put in a well placed kick from the left over to the right and with a bounce , Mark Harrison took the ball cleanly and sprinted 50 yards to score.
Biggar now had the upper hand and went in at half time in the lead.
Half time Biggar in the lead with 36 points to Musselburgh 17 points
There could be no doubt that Musselburgh knew they could get back into the game if their well drilled backs could get ball and at the same time their forwards could try to lift their game.
This they did and straight from kick off they came back in with another strong run by their backs putting the winger in. Musselburgh forwards were now more organised and were working in pairs to stop the Biggar big forwards who were trying to punch holes.
Biggar backs were finding it difficult against a back line who had pace and skill with excellent angled runs that was causing problems with the Biggar defence which in all the positions was not getting up on their opposite man quickly enough to stop them.
Also the forwards were struggling in areas such as lineouts.
A further try was taken by the Musselburgh winger and Biggar were now in defensive problems as shown when the again went over. Nobody can be signalled out as this team play as a team and take any problems as a team.
Musselburgh were now just a point behind and with two minutes to go , put over a penalty to take the lead.
Biggar pressurised to get back in but were getting held well and in fact Musselburgh seized an opportunity for their winger to go over and win the game.
It was a disappointment as so much work went in but credit has to also go to Musselburgh who had an excellent back line with pace and skill.
“Yes it was a defeat but its just another word for experience”
Nobody can doubt that as the last few years we have a special bunch of boys who would be a credit to any club
Full time – Musselburgh 42 points to Biggar 36 points
Story date: 06/10/2014
Biggar Colts fall at Melrose
Melrose Wasps 43 pts v Biggar Colts 8pts
National Under 18 Bowl Quarter Finals
You have to have a bad day every once in a while... otherwise you'll never know what a good day feels like.
Biggar Colts managed to have their bad day at Melrose on Saturday in the Quarter final of the National Bowl.
The boys put in a stirring 1st half performance only being 4 points behind at half time but in the 2nd half , Melrose ran in five tries of which three were gifted to them with interceptions (mistimed passes) or dropped balls that were capitalised on.
In the 1st half , Melrose started at a significant pace and it was not long before they put points on the board with a try out wide. It came from simple hands and Biggar being caught by committing 2 players to the same player which left an overlap.
Biggar then responded with some good strong running which took play up the park where they were awarded a penalty which was converted by Gregor Stewart. Melrose were finding the close tight play of Biggar hard to cope with but it was not being capitalised on as too often Biggar tried to offload too many times which resulted in knock ons and loose ball which allowed Melrose to contain any Biggar advantage.
Melrose also kicked often down the field which although well fielded by Biggar there was lack of real counter attacking play and too often runners were cutting back in.
However with the pack mauling well, Mark Ewart burst away wide out and put a pass to Craig Stewart to go over for an unconverted try.
From this Melrose were stirred into action and lifted the gears in the forwards gaining considerable distance but they too did not capitalise on it as too often they were being penalised for holding on too long on the ground.
Melrose did before half-time get a penalty try as Biggar were penalised for bringing down a driving maul from a lineout.
Half time : Melrose 12 pts to Biggar 8 pts
At half time the messages were clear.
Stronger counter attacking and support
Keep it tight with the forwards
Don't keep off loading when tackled
Watch the pass
However it was not to be and along with some poor decision making Biggar gifted an early try for Melrose due to an interception.
Melrose learned that if they timed it right they could take ball as Biggar were going to continually offload and so they could expose this with interceptions and benefit from knock-ons when ball was being poorly distributed.
Melrose were now raising the tempo of the game and at all times moved the ball quickly which Biggar was struggling to react to and especially out wide where Melrose could create overlaps easily and that was how they got their next try. Even though their tries were outwide the conversions were being well executed.
Biggar tried to raise the game but decision making was going wrong and Melrose capitalised on loose ball when Biggar tried to run out of their own 22 .
The last 2 tries for Melrose were copy cats of each other due to quick counter attacking and fast ball being put out to wingers who expose overlaps and at times poor tackling.
Full time : Melrose 43 pts to Biggar 8pts
Biggar boys knew there were elements of the game that went wrong and mistakes were too often and frequent but nothing should be taken away from a bunch of boys who have and will continue to play good rugby. Melrose Coaches felt that this was a closer game than the score line suggests as they were gifted tries. Also they could see that Biggar were not as fit and sharp as them having not played much rugby lately. Indeed Melrose have had 3 games since Biggar last played and it really should be an issue that needs addressed by the Edinburgh league.
But when one door shuts , then another opens and Biggar will now move over to continue with the Edinburgh Shield.
Next Week is Haddington/Preston Lodge
for match photos click on this link http://www.flickr.com/photos/93981743@N08/sets/72157650331920872/
Story date: 18/01/2015
Colts League campaign gets underway at last
Ross Jackson in determined mood bursts away from the Dunbar cover
Gregor Stewart prepares to take on the Dunbar back line - including 'on loan' Martin Hunter (Dunbar No1)
The squad pose for their first photo of the year.
Dunbar Colts 0 pts v Biggar Colts 79pts
Edinburgh and District Under 18 League
Biggar Colts finally got their league campaign started on Saturday after postponements with a fine performance at Dunbar where 13 tries were scored against a team who never gave up.
Dunbar may have lost heavily but what they did win was the respect by Biggar in how they kept going no matter how hard it was for them.
Before kick off the Dunbar pack looked big and heavy and would want to strangle Biggar in getting any ball out to their backs. However the Biggar forwards had other ideas and started the game at such a ferocity that it was the Dunbar forwards who could not handle the continual strong running of all the forwards in Ryan Ferguson, Mark Ewart , Jack Foster , William Grieve, Andrew Orr, Ross Jackson, Craig Stewart and Stuart Affleck who played at such a pace that the backs must have often felt like passengers for much of the game.
In fact the backs scored only 3 tries while the forwards claimed 10 tries and certainly took the glory. The forwards were playing a very direct running game while the backs were tending to play outwide but it was not paying as much dividend.
Tries in the 1st half came from Stuart Affleck after some good hands by the backs, Richard Morgan out wide , Simon Denholm after a fine No8 pick up by Ross Jackson who also got on the score sheet with a take a the restart and a sprint all the way to touch down. William Grieve also had an exact similar score , followed by Mark Ewart and the Stuart Affleck and final score in the half was credited to the ever present dynamic and versatile Jack Foster who bulldozed over from 4 inches out.
4 conversions were put over with 3 credited to Gregor Stewart and 1 to James Barr.
In this half the backs had held firm and launched many attacks with Gregor Stewart showing excellent attacking and defensive skills and certainly operated a steady ship in midfield. Plenty ball was being distributed by James Barr and Simon Denholm. However it was concerning to see Ewan Eccles take another bad shoulder injury that may keep him out for some time.
An area of concern for the coaches was that impressive breaks were being made but when the players were being caught or tackled , often the ball was not being well offloaded so reducing more try scoring opportunities. This was evident in a lot of the players.
So guess what will be being practised at training.
“Its always helpful to learn from your mistakes because then your mistakes seem worthwhile”.
Half time 48 points to 0 for Biggar.
Scrums went to uncontested in the 2nd half and credit must go to Dunbar who actually came at Biggar and caused some strong defensive work to be implemented.
Biggar did score straight away from the restart after a fine take by William Grieve who in turn passed to Ross Jackson who scorched over.
Bit it was some 20 minutes later before Biggar got another score from Jack Foster who actually this time did run in from 15 yards which was then followed up by tries from Peter Steele, Ross Jackson and regular scorer Craig Stewart to finish the game off. 2 more conversion from James Barr and 1 from Gregor Stewart put the final score to 79 points to 0 points.
As we say “Its all work in progress “ and there was a time in the second half where ball was going out to the backs but too often ball was being squandered due to over running and many of them drifting which caused players to be crowded out on the wing. Experience is simply the name we give our mistakes.
If you're not making mistakes, then you're not doing anything. I'm positive that a doer makes mistakes.
Offloading did not improve in the second half but it still does not interfere with the excellent all round performance of Biggar and especially the forwards who are willing to attack from everywhere. The whole squad deserves credit. This bunch of boys are gelling really well on the park, wanting to play for each other and this bodes well for future games.
Next up it is Haddington next Saturday at home.
Story date: 15/09/2014
Colts take on Dalziel
Biggar Colts 24 v Dalziel Colts 17 .
Pre Season Friendly
Fifteen guys on the pitch working together can achieve more than fifteen talented individuals who come and go as individuals.
Too often on Saturday many of the Colts failed to combine and work as a unit and the structure demanded was not evident.
This does not take anything away from a good win against Dalziel at Hartree by 24 points to 17 points in this pre-season friendly.
Dalziel were a solid unit and Biggar knew they would be tested just as firmly as they were last year when the Steelmen recorded a deserved win.
With a strong wind facing them in the first half, Biggar knew they had to keep the ball tight and work up the field before any ball was moved wide. This they did well with the forwards hitting up powerfully and from this type of play the ball was moved well with fast hands from James Barr to Calum Wesencraft and lastly Richard Morgan who went over for a fine try wide out but which was not converted.
Straight away from the restart another try followed – this right out of the top drawer with the forwards showing great levels of skill, speed and agility. Kyle Anderson took the restart, side stepped at least 3 players before passing to Mark Ewart who then passed back to the-ever-present Anderson who then shipped it on to Ross Jackson who in turn put a pass to Stuart Affleck for a try that was as good as seen for some time. James Barr put over the conversion.
The back row were starting to dominate and it was Anderson who was the stand out with his constant presence and ability around the park. To most spectators and especially the pleasingly large support Biggar it appeared that Biggar were going to dominate - but this was not to be the case.
Many of the boys too thought the game would be easy and started to do their own thing without laying down any platform. Unfortunately this all led to broken play with turnovers, poor tackling and spilled ball creeping into Biggars game and which Dalziel capitalised on.
Dalziel got a penalty and from a quick tap and go they went over for a converted try.
Play was still too loose and mistakes were costing Biggar as chances were created but not taken.
Dalziel levelled the score with a drive from a lineout and then went further ahead with Biggar failing to take the ball near their own line. Dalziel took the scrap ball to put another try on the board. The stand-off from Dalziel was making his presence felt and was creating many opportunities.
Biggar knew they had to regroup to try and stop the problem areas. Eventually the forwards took more control and from a scrum Ross Jackson took the ball blind and powered up the field. When stopped short the move was continued by Andrew Orr who bullied is way over to level the scores.
Ball was being put out well from the forwards and it was Simon Denholm at scrum half who was making this happen with his reliable passing, constant tackling and support play all of which was proving hard for Dalziel to contain.
From this good clean ball the Jardine brothers (Aird and Andrew ) were gaining much ground in the centre and Andrew was unlucky not to go over, just being stopped short of the line.
It was great to not only see the Jardine brothers on the pitch but they were joined by the Anderson Brothers (Kyle and Ryan) so making this a memorable occasion for their families. These memories as brothers playing together will be shared for a long time.
Biggar knew they had to shut this game down and they did with some fast hands out to the wing where Craig Stewart had positioned himself cleverly to take the ball and sprint over the line from 15 yards (not 90 yards as claimed!). Simon Denholm put over and excellent conversion to finish the game.
There is no doubt that before the league campaign eventually starts that a lot of work still needs to be put in. Nothing ever comes to one, that is worth having, except as a result of hard work. The road to success is not easy to navigate, but with hard work, drive and passion, it's possible to achieve the dream. We are sure that the Jardine and Anderson brothers dreamed of playing together and they did but it took hard work to earn their place together.
Next week the league campaign is due to start against Musselburgh but unfortunately due to some Musselburgh player issues this may have to be postponed. Please keep reading the website for updates throughout the week.
Note: Everyone from Biggar Rugby Club and especially the Colts would like to wish young Aird Jardine all the best as he embarks on a year out in Australia. There is no doubt he will prove to be an asset to the rugby club he will be joining both on and off the pitch as he enjoys his time in Sydney.
Story date: 02/09/2014
Our Colts team is made up of our 16-18 age players and competes in the Edinburgh District U-18 League, competing at the highest level and providing stiff competition for any team in Scotland,. The team train on Tuesdays and Thursdays and is coached by Yogi, Muz and Gavin, who have been working hard with this ever changing group for a number of years and have coached many of our current 1st and 2nd XV players.
If you would like to know more about our colts team please conatact Colts Convener David (Muz) Murray on 07786158710
Story date: 23/02/2013