Could YOU be the next Club Match
There are around 12 home games each season each requiring a match programme.
There are 8 A5 pages in each programme.
Sounds a lot BUT
1. Welcome (Al Stewart)
2. Centre pages are Teams/Refs/Match sponsors etc. (GY)
3. Last page is details of League table, other league fixtures, forthcoming home games etc ie Copy and Paste!
That leaves 4 pages to fill.
That would be up to you – but it could be that a request is made to each section on a rota basis to provide an article for inclusion (ie Mini, Midi, Youth, Girls, 2nd XV, 3rd XV),
Write the articles, e-mail then to the printers on the Wednesday evening. They can be collected/delivered. Enjoy the read at the game!
What could be easier? Contact Al Stewart for more details 07796175381
Story date: 04/06/2013
Or if that doesn’t suit. Could you be our next Club Match reporter?
If Programme Editor doesn't suit..................Could you be Biggar RFC’s next Match reporter?
You get a touchline/ringside ‘seat’…..OK, not true. You stand at the barrier – but you can choose where!
§ jot down a few notes on the day,
§ edit the report on Sunday
§ collate the reports from the other sections
§ fire it up onto the website
§ e-mail it all to the papers.
What could be easier?
Story date: 04/06/2013
If you think you could do it, please contact
Al Stewart asap for full details
Mobile : 07796175381
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Story date: 18/03/2013
Glasgow Hawks 24 Biggar 19 - 3/12/11
Glasgow Hawks 24 Biggar 19
Story date: 06/12/2011
With both Premiership and Cup competitions in abeyance until the New Year, Biggar had a back up friendly game with Premier 1 side Glasgow Hawks at New Anniesland in Glasgow.
The Glasgow side have not had a great season to date and contemplate a vital series of Premier B games in the New Year to secure their Premiership future and to stave off relegation. As a Premier 1 side however they provided a tough challenge. Biggar on the back of two great performances against Stewarts Melville and Watsonians travelled with some confidence although midweek training was virtually written off after the rains.
Biggar featured their customary XV but with Davy Reive opening at scrum half, and Iain Renwick on the wing while Lewis McLachlan opened at No 8. The forwards were without their recognised lineout pairing of Andrew Cairns and Grant Owens and this undoubtedly proved to be a factor in their performance.
In addition it took the Premier 2 side a full half hour to realise that they were in a game that they could win, two costly early errors gifting their hosts a couple of tries and which forced Biggar to play catch up. Well though they managed this, their challenge fell short to give the Glasgow outfit the honours.
Winger Tom Steven was the main beneficiary of these errors as he crossed for two tries, one of which was converted by Mike Martin to give the Glasgow side a 12-0 lead.
Biggar are not without a good deal of spirit however and a score from Hata Wilbore gave them a lift. This try came after Biggar ran the ball through the hands, a tactic which worked well and which threatened the Hawks line on every occasion. Conor Lavery fed wide to Amo Wilbore who in turn passed to his brother, the centre making a great break to cross from some 25 metres. Craig Parker converted for 12-7, this the halftime score.
The same Wilbore brother scored a second try on the restart to take the scores level at 12-12 but Hawks replied with a sustained period of power play to put Biggar under the cosh. While Biggar defended stoically there was a certain inevitability that their line would eventually be breached, this coming as Steven crossed for his hat-trick. At 17-12 there was still nothing in the game although another period of pressure saw Hawks increase their lead with a try after Biggar ceded possession in their 22. Hawks looked to their pack to take possession towards the Biggar line and this they did well before taking the ball over the line for a forwards try, the scorer buried under pile of bodies and therefore unrecognisable. Martin added the conversion to put Hawks ahead by 24-12.
Happily Biggar came back into things again and managed a third try of their own, the credited to Renwick who slid in at the corner. Parker’s excellent touchline conversion took Biggar to within just one score of victory but time ran out for them and they had to settle for second place.
A worthwhile run out however, and with just one game scheduled at present – this to Watsons (again) in a fortnight - before the resumption of Premier games in January, a vital one to boot.
A. Wilbore, C. Parker, J. Gardiner, H. Wilbore, I. Renwick, C. Lavery, D. Reive, C. Arthur, M. Rutherford, S. Faamausili, J. Harvey, A. Peacock, J. Scheres, C. Cochrane, L. McLachlan
Reps; K. Anderson, E. Sanderson, R. Peacock.
Biggar 27 Watsonians 14 - 1s cup game
Biggar won this game and with it their Edinburgh Regional Pool which comprised of themselves Stew-Mel and Watsonians. As winners they now await the draw for the next round of the competition, which is scheduled for January 21st.
In extremely challenging conditions everyone involved on Saturday, the teams, officials and spectators all deserve great credit for their efforts, the wind and rain which swept the length of the Hartreemill pitch for the bulk of the first half reducing brollies to tatters and penetrating the most waterproof of clothing.
That the players all came off the park with big smiles on their faces is testament to the enjoyment they got from the game – or was it just relief that they were at last bound for the warmth of the shower?
Biggar made a few of changes with Cameron Thomson unavailable and Bob Aitken and Grant Owens on their Antipodean travels. Twins Amo and Hata Wilbore resumed their promising partnership while Michael McKeand and Douglas Notman returned to the starting XV. The postponement of the 2nd XV game meant that the bench was strengthened with the inclusion of veteran Stuart Harrison and youngster Ewan Sanderson.
Having won the toss Watsons elected to play with the elements presumably believing that they would be able to open up and then defend a half time lead. Biggar however had very different thoughts and opened really strongly, their desire to run the ball evident from the outset as penalties were tapped and run whenever possible putting the visitors on the back foot and leading to territorial gain. .
This tactic was always prone to error however and so it proved a dropped pass in midfield leading to a kick and chase to the Biggar 22. The initial surge from this position seemed to have been stalled as Conor Lavery won a turnover but as quickly as ball was won so it was lost as it was squeezed out of the ruck, Watsons scrum half Brian Walls who again looked in fine form giving a simple pass to centre and ex-Biggar man Douglas Brown who romped over for an early score. Walls converted the try for 7-0.
There was little worry however as the conditions suggested that the bulk of the play would be in front of the clubhouse. That this was not in fact the case is a tribute to the efforts of the Biggar pack who raised their game and set ball back time and again and had Watsons on the back foot. In their efforts to contain the Biggar onslaught Watsons conceded a host of penalties and while referee Ireland warned the visiting skipper there could have as easily been a yellow card issued as the penalty count rose.
Another foray into the Biggar 22 from a kick forward saw fullback Wilbore gather and prepare to kick. That he delayed a fraction gave the supporting Watsons backs the chance to charge down the attempted clearance, centre Tom Hart gathering the loose ball to plunge over for a second try. Walls kicked for 14-0. This score came with just 5 minutes remaining on the clock and at that Biggar would probably have been quite happy but the half was rounded off in classic style as Biggar took play deep into the Watsons 22 courtesy of a couple of free kicks. Amo Wilbore advanced play with a mazy run before off-loading to Lavery. While the stand-offs progress was halted the ball was fed to flanker Joe Scheres who nipped through the Watsons defence for an excellent score under the
posts. The Kiwi was doubly chuffed with this effort as his family, who have been on a European ‘tour’ and who arrived last week to help him celebrate his 21st birthday, were on hand to witness the try. Craig Parkers conversion brought the half to an end with Biggar just one score behind.
The players took refuge from the storm in the clubhouse while the officials enjoyed a cup of tea in the tea rooms, referee Ireland remarking that in addition to the ‘customary earache’ he received at the hands of the support, he was finding his 'non-miced' ear a trifle sore from the gale!
Biggar took the sensible option at the break of changing strips and there can be little doubt, even as the rain stopped, that this made a contribution to their play. Would Biggar be able to reduce the gap however, or would Watsons, as they had just three weeks ago in the Prem 2 game, come storming out of the traps to effectively seal the win?
Happily for Biggar it was the first scenario which came to fruition an early penalty from Parker reducing the visitors lead to just 3. Biggar almost took the lead after 10 minutes when a neat chip over the Watsons defence was all but gathered by Lavery who had read the play well, the ball just failing to stick at the first, second and indeed third attempt.
While Watsons survived that attempt a Biggar score was merely delayed. A rushed Watsons clearance was kept in play after a neat tap down by Parker, the ball finding Lavery whose neat off-load was taken by a charging Suti Faamausili. The big prop slid over for a try which parker converted for 17-14 and the lead.
With their tails up Biggar extended their lead just minutes later as a penalty was kicked deep in the visitors 22. a great take from Josh Harvey was advanced via a dynamic line drive, the lock touching down for a try again converted by Parker. At 22-14 Watsons now required two scores to reclaim the lead. Their option to pick and drive proved very successful in terms of yards gained, but as had been the case when Biggar lost control in the first half, any loose ball was summarily dispatched to the other end of the park with the Biggar chasers in hot pursuit. In addition the very competent and committed Biggar defence meant that whatever pressure the visitors exerted, they were brought to ground, EVERY Biggar players doing their bit in this department.
The coup de gras and bonus point winning try came with just 3 minutes on the clock and, fittingly after a very good performance, it was Parker who scored the try. A defensive hack clear from Watsons to their 10 m line was gathered by the winger who promptly set off on an arcing run. This was initially met with some derision from the home support – after all, forward is always better than across! Well not always apparently as Parker straightened up and then produced two stunning hand offs which took him round the Watsons defence and over in the corner. His conversion attempt didn’t really matter, as referee Ireland, who must have had great difficulty in differentiating the players in the glaur towards the end, brought the contest to a close minutes later.
A. Wilbore, C. Parker, J. Gardiner, H. Wilbore, M. McKeand, C. Lavery, I. Renwick, C. Arthur, K. Anderson, S. Faamausili, J. Harvey, A. Peacock, J. Scheres, C. Cochrane, D. Notman
Reps; D. Reive, E. Sanderson, S. Harrison, E. McAlpine
Departing coach Gary Parker was again delighted by the performance and believes the steady improvements in play can be traced back to the second half of the Peebles game when after a dismal first half Biggar came back strongly.
Story date: 28/11/2011
That the side now has just two friendly games prior to the resumption of Premiership rugby on 14th January – against Glasgow Hawks this Saturday (3rd December) and Watsons (yes….again!, on 17th December) - is a huge frustration to all.
Stewarts Melville 19 Biggar 27 - 19/11/11
Stewarts Melville 19 Biggar 27
Biggar journeyed to Stewarts Melville for their first Edinburgh Regional Cup game against an Edinburgh side which has been beaten just twice this season and that by the same team, their near neighbours Watsonians.
Having lost their first Cup game last week Stew-Mel were effectively out of the competition as courtesy of a ludicrous cup programme of 3 teams and just 2 games (when there are 7 free Saturdays available) only the top side progresses to the next round. As such there were several changes in the Edinburgh XV but equally there were 6 changes from the Biggar XV which hosted Stew-Mel at Hartreemill back in September. Lewis McLachlan made a welcome return to top team action, at No 8 no less, this after a number of promising performances for the 2nd XV and of course following the long lay off while he recuperated from a series of shoulder problems.
Most pleasingly the Biggar outfit played some of their best rugby of the season to date, handling ball well and at great pace to put their hosts under real pressure from the opening shots. Not that the game was one-sided as Stew-Mel also opened up whenever they could using ball effectively as well to provide a very open, entertaining game.
Andrew Peacock, Joe Scheres, Hata Wilbore (2) and Craig Parker all crossed for tries with Parker notching one conversion to complete the Biggar tally.
A. Wilbore, C. Parker, J. Gardiner, C. Thomson, H. Wilbore, C. Lavery, I. Renwick, A. Peacock, K. Anderson, S. Faamausili, J. Harvey, G. Owens, J. Scheres, C. Cochrane, L. McLachlan
Reps; D. Reive, R. Aitken, E. McAlpine
This win sets Biggar up nicely for next weeks game against Watsonians with, of course, the winner progressing to the next round of the Edinburgh Cup. It was Watsonians who Biggar played in their last league game a fortnight ago and Biggar supporters will soon be quite familiar with the players from both these Edinburgh sides as ‘friendly’ games have been organised with both to help keep players on the go during this prolonged mid-season break.
Story date: 21/11/2011
Fixture Secretary John Jackson has been involved in endless phone calls to try to fill in the blank Saturdays but with each Region (West, Edinburgh, Borders and Caledonia) operating different systems for their own Cup competitions there are precious few clubs available to play.
The league clash with Watsonians was a good entertaining game and the return fixture at Hartreemill promises to be much the same with, of course, the added prize of a continued Cup run adding spice to the contest. Kick off is 2pm so all spectators are encouraged to turn out to cheer the Biggar lads on.
Watsonians 31 Biggar 15
Watsonians 31 Biggar 15
After a strong and gritty performance in windy and wet conditions in last week’s victory against Jedforest, Biggar travelled away to Watsonians who sat third before this game and needed a win to confirm a top four finish while Biggar seemed destined for bottom eight.
Biggar made two enforced changes with the unavailable Michael McKeand and Cameron Thomson both attending ex-Biggar player Billy Scanlon’s wedding. In their places came Hata Wilmore for his debut at 1st XV level and Bob Aitken. Watsonians appeared at full strength with former Biggar mini Douglas Brown still a fixture in their side, though at wing rather than centre.
It was a lovely sunny autumn afternoon in Edinburgh, ideally suited to running rugby. Despite this, it was a cagey start from both teams with handling and kicking errors plaguing the games early stages. Biggar had the most notable chance with Craig Parker almost going through after another interception but he was unable to gather the ball cleanly but despite his best efforts to keep the ball alive the half chance was gone.
Of the two sides, Biggar had the upper hand in the opening stages with the ref’s verdict of the ball being passed forward from Grant Owens (who had charged down a Watsonians clearance) to Aitken the only thing stopping Biggar from getting seven points on the board. Although Biggar had all the territory in the first ten or so minutes, they had no points to show for it and when Watsonians got a penalty on the visitors’ ten metre line for not rolling away in the tackle, they took the lead. Scrum half Brian Walls, who kicked well from both tee and hand throughout the game, kicked the penalty.
Biggar came straight back after this set back and found themselves deep in opposition territory once again but again failed to take anything from their visit.
A Watsons breakout from their 22 had Biggar scampering back to cover, with Owens again to the fore and Joe Scheres making one of many crucial turnovers. Soon after, Watsonians missed a chance to increase their lead after a penalty from the right hand side slid wide of the uprights. The home side were starting to see more of the ball but Biggar again found themselves in the Watsonians twenty two after a good kick from Lavery. This continuous knocking at the opponent’s door finally led to a kickable penalty which Parker gleefully took, levelling the scores.These points seemed to shake Watsonians and they piled on the pressure to Biggar straight from the restart. They were soon into the Biggar 22 when the Watsonians full back put in a cross kick, switching the play from right to left. It was caught by Watsonians’ winger Rowe who beat one man before popping the ball inside to centre Tom Hart, who scored in the far left hand corner. Walls missed the conversion , leaving the score at 8-3 to the home side.
Biggar tried to reply immediately to this and after a great turnover in Watsonians territory by flanker Joe Scheres it seemed they would but, with an overlap, the ball again spilled out of Biggar hands, which was fast becoming a common theme in the half for them.
Half time came with Biggar again on the attack in the Edinburgh sides half but unable again to convert pressure into points. It was hugely frustrating for the Biggar support who have seen their side score some really good tries in recent weeks, with the only thing that seemed to be stopping Biggar from getting a lead was the constant knock ons inside the opposition twenty two.
The second half began and with it a reinvigorated Watsonians pack. Almost immediately Biggar conceded a try after a hanging restart from Watsonians led to a knock on which was capitalised on when hooker Danny Moussa touched down after a few good solid phases by the home forwards. Walls converetd.
Things soon got worse for Biggar when Parker was sin binned for deliberately kicking the ball away when he was in an offside position. Walls missed the penalty but he was on hand to deliver a raking touch finder as Biggar sought to escape their half from the restart. The visitors hadn’t ventured out their own half in the second period but had the chance to get up the field with a freekick. Unfortunately the kick came off the wrong part of Amo Wilbore’s boot and straight into opposition hands, leading to a strong run by Tom Hart who broke a tackle and soon found himself with only the full back to beat. Unselfishly the centre passed it to the supporting Marcus Di Rollo who went in for the try.
After a decent first half Biggar had been blown away in less than 10 minutes of the second half, and were now 22-3 down. Despite this and being a man down, Biggar suddenly started to see the ball a lot more, winning penalties and eventually doing what had eluded them in the first half by scoring a try. This came after some good forwards play from a quick penalty allowed Charles Cochrane to crash over, thereby reducing the gap to 14 with the conversation missed by Wilbore from the left hand touch line.
Despite having a decent game otherwise visiting ref Rob Warburton made a fairly crucial error on the restart, he judging that the ball had been tapped forward to Michael Rutherford who had cleverly got behind the Watsons pack as they contested the kick but who, as a result, was offside. In actual fact, this confirmed by the sprinkling of home supporters closest to the incident, the ball had been tapped back by the Watsons pack which should have provided free ball for Rutherford. While the hooker would never have scored, Biggar would have had possession but instead they had to watch Walls strike another penalty to extend his sides lead to 25-8.
Parker returned to the pitch and immediately made his presence felt after Biggar had managed to get into the home 22. Keeping Watsons trapped there and not giving them an inch to move a mistake came as, having given away the ball at the line out, a loose pass midfield as Watsons sought to counter was latched onto by Parker who went unchallenged over the tryline. He converted his own try, making the gap 25-15 and giving his side hope.
Another fantastic restart yet again resulted in a kickable Watsonians penalty which was converted, extending the lead back to 25-15. Biggar came back strongly and set up camp in the home 22. The forwards pushed on, trying to get the score that would bring the gap into single digits. Watsonians were defending for their lives with the ball being held up after yet another Biggar surge. Unfortunately for the Biggar supporters the Watsonians wall of defence stood strong and they won a penalty, relieving the pressure. In a blink of an eye, Watsonians were down the other end of the pitch and won a penalty which Walls kicked to dissect the posts, and which left Biggar with the impossible task of getting 16 points in less than 5 minutes.
Despite Biggar pressure, no more points were added and the game ended 31-15 to Watsonians. TheEdinburgh outfit were good for their win but things could have been totally different had Biggar taken their first half chances. The loss leaves Biggar seventh at the end of the mid season but plenty of positives to take into the second half of the season.
These were in the shape of Scheres who again took a large number of turnovers and whose defence is excellent but who had a rare battle with Watsons outstanding back row man Paul Tuala, Owens who ran well from No8, Cochrane who tackled successfully and decisively throughout and Cairns who took some excellent lineout ball.
A. Wilbore, C. Parker, J. Gardiner, R. Aitken, H. Wilbore, C. Lavery, I. Renwick, C. Arthur, M. Rutherford, S. Faamausili, J. Harvey, A. Cairns, J. Scheres, C. Cochrane, G. Owens
Reps; D. Reive, A. Peacock, L. McLachlan, K. Anderson
All these positives were soon forgotten however as the news broke of coach Gary Parkers resignation which he announced to the players in the Myreside changing rooms immediately after the game. An offer of employment in Australia has proved to much for the Melrose man and he will leave these shores in the New Year to begin a new life with his family in Oz. The news obviously came as a massive shock to the club and will now lead to a search for a replacement. It is of course far too early to speculate on who that person will be but hopes are high that the vacancy can be filled quickly.
Story date: 07/11/2011
While the league season enters its mid season break, action continues through until the end of November with the Edinburgh Regional league games. The first of these sees Biggar travel to take on Stewarts Melville (19th November) with the second a home game against Saturdays opponents, Watsonians at Hartreemill (26th November).
1st XV v West Match report
Biggar 14 West of Scotland 20
After the high points of last week at Falkirk Biggar entertained West on Saturday for what was a fairly crucial game for both sides.
Biggar were keen to keep the momentum going after good performances in recent weeks while with just one win from seven outings, West were keen to kick-start their season and get up the table a little.
West had ex-Biggar player Angus Thomson in their ranks, this being the first time the youngster has played for anyone other than Biggar and also the first time he has ever been in opposition tom his big brother Cameron. That West won means that Angus is one up on his brother although the league points gained will mean much more than any sibling rivalry!
In poor conditions of unremitting drizzle the kick off was delayed until 3.30pm as the officials en route from Aberdeen were held up in traffic on the Forth Road bridge. In addition Grounds Convenor Jock Muir was forced to line the pitches with saw dust as all his best efforts to line the pitch had been wasted by the drizzle. Incidentally the 2nd XV game was postponed for this very reason as the referee deemed the original lines too poor to allow play, though Dumfries’ decision to abandon playing because of pressing social engagements was a trifle cheeky.
Traffic problems also delayed Biggar coach Gary Parker and whether the disrupted preparation or the delayed kick off was to blame is not known but Biggar failed to perform as they have in recent weeks. The side was slow to start and while progress has been on-going over the past month, this was as close to a backward step that Parker will wish to take.
In contrast West had a bright start with stand off Ross McAuley crashing onto the upright before touching down for the opening score and this with just 6 minutes on the clock.
Conditions dictated that running rugby was always fraught with problems with much of the play centering around a kicking game between the backs, neither side able to gain real control for any prolonged period.
McAuley successfully kicked the conversion to his try but he was off target with a couple of penalties and a drop goal minutes later. Both sides tended to cancel each other for the most part with play focused between the 22’s.
Biggar had some good attacking moves and made ground well but too often the ball was turned over as possession was lots in contact or slipped from players grasp. With the first quarter over Biggar took full advantage of the first scoring opportunity given them with Craig Parker kicking a penalty for 7-3, this after some excellent preparatory work from Suti Faamausili, Colin Arthur, Michael Rutherford and Josh Harvey.
Frustratingly a penalty was conceded almost directly from the re-start and McAuley swiftly restored his sides 7 point advantage. Just 5 minutes later and west stretched their lead with a third penalty from McAuley to put his side ahead by 13-3 at half time.
On the last play before the break Biggar were awarded a penalty after Andrew Cairns secured yet another good lineout steel. Unfortunately the ball drifted right of the posts, this heralding the end of the first half.
Story date: 10/10/2011
The home team made the best possible start to the half as they made a good break which featured some excellent hands before stand off Conor Lavery put up neat chip to the corner this gratefully collected by skipper Douglas Notman who then dived over for a great try. Lavery kicked well but could only watch as the ball bounced off the right hand upright.
Biggar’s generosity then played its part as the side was far too keen to concede penalties, McAuley kicking for position in the pitch corner. A well-taken lineout ball and then line drive – this tactic also employed by Biggar but it generally lacked the cohesion and dynamism of the West team – gave No 8 and captain Jack Walker the chance to flop over for the try which McAuley converted for 20-11. This meant Biggar now required 2 converted scores to win the game. With a quarter of the game remaining there was indeed still time but Biggar’s generosity in conceding penalties and in trying to run out of defence when the kick was the easier option made things far more difficult than perhaps should have been the case.
As the clock ticked on a sense of panic slowly manifested itself as players tried to chase the game. There were few scoring opportunities however against what was a fairly frugal West defence. With the game almost ended Biggar mounted a last assault on the West line, an initial penalty their reward but one which, when kicked by Parker, gave Biggar what might be an all-important losing bonus point at 20-14. Indeed it was Biggar who ended the game on the offensive, a series of pick and go’s to the line being held up – but only just!
I. Renwick, C. Parker, J. Gardiner, C. Thomson, M. McKeand, C. Lavery, D. Reive (Capt) C. Arthur, M. Rutherford, S. Faamausili, J. Harvey, G. Owens, J. Scheres, D. Notman, A. Cairns
Reps; K. Anderson, A. Peacock, R. Aitken, A. Goodall.
Falkirk 11 Biggar 20
Story date: 07/10/2011
In the corresponding fixture last season Biggar returned from Falkirk nursing a headache after sustaining one of their heaviest defeats – a 53-23 thrashing at the hands of a very mobile and clinical Falkirk XV. The return fixture at Hartreemill saw Biggar triumph but the side which took the field this time round were in determined mood to ensure there was no repeat of that loss.
Coach Gary Parker has happily watched his side improve virtually week on week and was delighted on Saturday as the boys deservedly collected vital league points ‘on the road’. That means that Biggar jump 2 league places and sit on 7th spot with some 5 points between them and the coveted 4th top spot which would guarantee National league status for next season.
On the brand new Falkirk pitch but in a constant drizzle, Biggar opened well and quickly set the tone for what was the best part of the first half, namely a domination of the contact situation and the majority of territory.
This was achieved by a good tactical performance in that the ball was kicked to turn the Falkirk side and the Biggar chasers and pack worked hard to cut down on the opportunities available for Falkirk to the extent that they rarely got into the Biggar danger area and even more rarely threatened the Biggar line.
The game was a good contest though the conditions meant that ball was often lost in contact. Biggar were unusually a little under pressure in the tight scrum while the lineout possession was shared.
Conor Lavery and Iain Renwick were responsible for the kicking duties. Falkirk meanwhile relied on their half back partnership for their inspiration.
Biggar’s first try came from Grant Owens. Doug Notman made some good yards towards the posts before being stopped though he did offload to Owens. The big lock was then bundled over the line by the pack. Joe Scheres notched the second, this a fine individual effort which saw the flanker skip through and out of a ruck some 30 metres from the line. Before crossing the line he managed to side step the fullback to cross almost untouched. Craig Parker kicked two conversions and 1 penalty in this half while Falkirk kicked a penalty in reply.
The second half saw some more errors creep into the Biggar play as they failed to maintain the pace and pressure of the first half. They did still at times show signs of what they are capable but with Falkirk scoring another penalty and a try to Parker’s second penalty, Biggar ‘lost’ the second period. Target next week? Play for the full 80 minutes!!
Biggar host West of Scotland this weekend which is a welcome relief after two weeks on the road. Unusually the Glasgow side have not been doing too well to date having won just once and that in their opening game of the season against Jedforest. As a side relegated from Premier 1 last season they will be very keen to kick start things with a win – Biggar will need to be on top form to ensure that this does not happen this weekend.
I. Renwick, C. Parker, J. Gardiner, C. Thomson, M. McKeand, C. Lavery, D. Reive (Capt) C. Arthur, M. Rutherford, S. Faamausili, J. Harvey, G. Owens, J. Scheres, D. Notman, A. Cairns
Reps; K. Anderson, A. Peacock, R. Aitken, A. Goodall.
1st XV Selkirk - Biggar Match Report
Selkirk 23 Biggar 22
Biggar’s return to Philliphaugh after an absence of some 4 years proved ultimately to be a hugely frustrating one as they lost out by the smallest of margins, their only reward being a losing bonus point. It was the Border side who took the points to move up the table therefore, although the manner of the win, which saw Selkirk streak into a 14-0 lead after just 9 minutes then suffer a mini-collapse as Biggar fought back in an exciting first half had many of the Selkirk faithful biting their nails – especially as RFU whistler Tom Davies played a total of some 4 minutes injury time.
‘If only’s…’ are a big part of sport but essentially this was a game of missed opportunities with Selkirk’s Brian Cassidy off target with 3 penalties which would, had any of them been kicked, put his side out of sight. Biggar meanwhile could well argue that the ball which fell off the tee as Craig Parker ran to kick the conversion of Biggar’s 3rdtry would have given them, had it been kicked, a one point victory instead of Selkirk. Both sides also missed drop goal attempts so there was no shortage of incident.
On a bright autumn afternoon with the prevailing wind blowing as always from right to left, Selkirk began well as Biggar struggled to get to grips with the opening exchanges. Fraser Harkness sprinted through a stretched Biggar defence for the first try, converted by Cassidy with just 3 minutes on the clock. If this wasn’t the start Biggar had envisaged things just got worse as within 5 minutes they had conceded a second try, this from scrum half Michael McVie, Cassidy again converting for 14-0.
This seemed to be the spur Biggar required as they came right back into the game and following a well taken lineout ball and several thrusts to the line, Conor Lavery made a breenge and step to the line for a well-deserved score though referee Davies took time to consult with his touch judge before awarding the score. Craig Parker stroked the conversion over and Biggar were back in the game.
Both sides largely cancelled each other out until the half hour mark when Biggar were awarded a free kick. Lavery tapped to go and with the advantage still running Parker dropped a sweet goal to put Biggar just 4 behind at 14-10. This was the start of Biggar’s best spell although Cassidy did miss a penalty which would have kept his side ahead.
As it was Kevin Anderson initiated the next try with an excellent take of a rushed Selkirk clearance the hooker setting back excellent ball which Davy Reive fed to Lavery. His pass in turn went to Parker who weaved his way through the defence from some 35 metres for a great score which the winger then promptly converted to put his side ahead at 17-14.
Referee Davies halted the game just after the restart and with the touch judge involved Selkirk skipper Neil Darling was shown yellow. Biggar took full advantage though it needed a couple of flip passes from Jade Gardiner and Cameron Thomson to free Parker for another burst up the wing. His inside pass found the supporting Thomson who crashed over, then the incident with the ball falling off the tee which thwarted Parkers conversion attempt. Half time and Biggar were now ahead by 22-14.
The second half, in sharp contrast to the first which yielded 5 tries, was an uncompromising try-less though still entertaining affair, Selkirk using the elements and the boot to pin Biggar back in their own half and await errors of which there were plenty. Unable to escape their half for longish periods Biggar fell foul of the referee’s whistle and Cassidy exacted full retribution although he did miss 3 kickable penalties to give Biggar some hope.
Biggar contributed much to the contest however with several exciting passages of play but very much as was to be the case the next day in NZ, they were unable to retain possession at crucial times and lost the momentum gained. Thomson was shown yellow with 15 minutes to go and this certainly did not help matters, the centre simply in the wrong place at the wrong time as Selkirk piled on the pressure.
Joe Scheres continues to impress, his ability to win ball at the breakdown a real asset while he makes some excellent tackles; Doug Notman made several priceless and brave catches from the Selkirk ‘bombs’; Colin Arthur performed well again; Craig Parker looked more confident with ball in hand and Conor Lavery and Iain Renwick appeared less jaded than they had last week after their return from NZ. Coach Gary Parker felt that the first 10 minutes notwithstanding, his squad had played their best rugby this season, but that they must reduce the error rate which led to turnovers and loss of possession and was in effect their downfall.
S. Watson, C. Parker, J. Gardiner, C. Thomson, M. McKeand, C. Lavery, D. Reive (Capt) C. Arthur, K. Anderson, S. Faamausili, J. Harvey, P. Kane, J. Scheres, D. Notman, G. Owens. Reps; C. Cochrane, I. Renwick, M. Rutherford, A. Goodall.
Story date: 28/09/2011
Biggar RFC First XV
Herte is apage for the first XV to use.
Story date: 16/09/2011