FOSROC Super Series Sprint | Review of Round 3
The FOSROC Super Series Sprint continued this weekend with Round 3 where Edinburgh Rugby A and Glasgow Warriors A play for the final time before stepping down from the competition to prioritise the business end of their season. Here's how each game went.
FRIDAY 21 APRIL: STIRLING WOLVES V GLASGOW WARRIORS A
After a penalty was awarded to Stirling Wolves for Glasgow Warriors not releasing, Marcus Holden kicked off scoring for the evening with a successful kick over the sticks.
The Warriors rebuttal was immediate as they made strides into the Wolves territory. Warriors Ross McKnight found a small gap and attempted to add some points to the board, but the Wolves defence was too strong, and they managed to push back and get the visitors out of their 22.
Marcus Holden scored the first try of the game and successfully converted his own try to put the hosts into a comfortable 10-point lead with only 15 minutes passed in the game.
Warriors were keen to not have something on the board as Thomas Gordon beautifully tapped the ball and chased it down the pitch. His younger brother Connor Gordon playing in the same position for Wolves tackled him but was unable to stop his older brother from scoring the first Warriors try of the game. Christian Townsend kicked the ball right between the posts for the extras.
The home side continued to find the gaps in the Warriors defence line as Korie Winters broke away from the pack and put a comfortable distance on the pitch before handing the ball swiftly to Kyle McGhie who sprinted the rest of the way to the try line and crashed over the whitewash, dotting the ball in the corner. Another successful conversion from Marcus Holden further widened the point gap.
The hosts were quick to add to their lead once again as Marcus Holden got his second try of the game following a successful throw in and handoff, the Warriors defence proving weak again as they are unable to stop Holden for a second time. Holden’s golden boot proved successful again with the conversion and the hosts entered the break with a 17-point lead.
HALF-TIME: Stirling Wolves 24 – 7 Glasgow Warriors A
The visitors came out the gate eager to close the point gap from the first half. A perfectly executed handoff from Warriors allowed Murphy Walker to almost make it over the line but he is stopped short by a couple of feet. This makes space for Gregor Hiddleston to successfully tap and go and he planted the ball over the line for Warriors. Townsend added the extras.
Not wanting the visitors to get too comfortable a successful line out maul allowed Wolves Captain Reyner Kennedy to crash over the whitewash and secured the bonus try. Holden’s kick was unsuccessful for the first time this match, but the hosts still sat comfortably in the lead.
After a short pause in play both sides continued to apply pressure. A kick from Crag Jackson sent the ball feet from the try line but neither team were able to pick it up. Through the Warriors’ fumbling Jackson was able to pop the ball over the line for the Wolves second try of the second half.
A quick response from the visitors followed and a driving maul of blue helped Angus Fraser over the line. Conversion went wide.
Warriors were quick again as they were determined to close the point gap. A sprint down the pitch from a speedy Ross McKnight, who had made many successful breakaways earlier in the game, this time was successful as he sprinted over the line. A successful conversion from Townsend adding the extra two points.
The game quickly turned into a nail biting final 10 minutes as Warriors continued to make successful plays with another try in the bag from Angus Fraser. Conversion was missed.
Bleeding into extra time it looked possible that Warriors may be able to grab the win from what many believed to be the jaws of defeat, but one final fumble secured the win for the home side and the Warriors time in the FOSROC Super Series Sprint finished with a loss.
FULL-TIME: Stirling Wolves 34– 31 Glasgow Warriors A
Referee: David Sutherland
FOSROC Player of the Match: Craig Jackson (Stirling Wolves)
Stirling Wolves: Marcus Holden (2), Kyle McGhie, Reyner Kennedy, Craig Jackson
Glasgow Warriors A: Thomas Gordan, Gregor Hiddleston, Angus Fraser (2), Ross McKnight
Stirling Wolves: Marcus Holden (3)
Glasgow Warriors A: Christian Townsend (3)
Stirling Wolves: Marcus Holden
FRIDAY 21 APRIL: BOROUGHMUIR BEARS V AYRSHIRE BULLS
Under a stunning sunset at Meggetland, Boroughmuir Bears got their first victory of the 2023 FOSROC Super Series Sprint in front of a home crowd.
A fantastic break from Trystan Andrews allowed the Boroughmuir Bears Number 8 to make his way up the wing and neatly offload to his teammate Scott McGinley. McGinley dived over the whitewash in the corner, opening the scoring for the evening. Conversion was missed.
The Bulls responded quickly to power their hooker Grant Stewart in the middle of the maul and over the line. Antony Fitch added the extras.
Shortly after, the Bears were awarded a penalty very close to their try line for the Bulls not rolling away. Andy McLean took the kick, and it went clean through the sticks, adding another three points for the home team.
After being awarded a penalty advantage, the Bulls took a scrum close the whitewash. The ball was then passed out to Jamie Shedden who managed to battle through the Bears defence and over the line. Antony Fitch added the extras.
Hooker Corey Tait was shown a yellow for the Bears conceding too many penalties and he would spend the next ten minutes in the sinbin.
Another driving maul after the lineout allowed the Bulls to drive over their inside centre Kerr Yule and add another five points to the visitor’s scoreboard. Antony Fitch yet again added the conversion.
The Bears answered quickly with great power and using a strong pick and go routine from the forwards, Martin McGinley was over the whitewash. Andy McLean got the extras to close out the first half.
HALF-TIME: Boroughmuir Bears 15 – 21 Ayrshire Bulls
Yet another driving maul let the Bears to power hooker Corey Tait over the line and add another five points for the hosts. Andy McLean made the conversion despite the gusting wind and the Bears were one point up.
A case of déjà vu was in store for the hosts as they used another trusty driving maul from a line out to let Corey Tait get his second try of the evening and his team their try bonus. Andy McLean made the extras.
It was a fight until the end for both sides, but the Bears managed to hold back the hungry Bulls attack to end on a well-earned victory.
FULL-TIME: Boroughmuir Bears 29 – 21 Ayrshire Bulls
Referee: Jonny Perriam
FOSROC Player of the Match: Jack Fisher (Boroughmuir Bears)
Boroughmuir Bears: Scott McGinley, Martin McGinley, Corey Tait (2)
Ayrshire Bulls: Grant Stewart, Jamie Shedden, Kerr Yule
Boroughmuir Bears: Andy McLean (3)
Ayrshire Bulls: Antony Fitch (3)
Boroughmuir Bears: Andy McLean
Boroughmuir Bears: Corey Tait
SATURDAY 22 APRIL: HERIOT’S RUGBY V WATSONIANS
The scoring was opened for the afternoon by Watsonians’ second row Luis Ball after multiple phases of pick and go. Lee Millar makes the conversion.
A huge team effort was applied to get Heriot’s their first points on the scoreboard. The hosts used all their might to drive captain Iain Wilson over the whitewash. Ross Jones added the extras, bringing the teams to equal footing.
A yellow card was shown to Heriot’s Grant Hughes for deliberately killing the play and he was sent to the sinbin for ten minutes.
The Watsonians attack proved too strong for the Heriot’s defence as another series of kick and go’s let Jamie Berrisford barrel over the whitewash, adding another five points to the visitor’s scoresheet. Lee Millar finished off, adding the conversion.
A nifty offload from Ross Jones to Dan King out the back door was enough to let the young full-back dance his way over the line in the corner. Ross Jones’ conversion was good, bringing the hosts’ score level with their visitors at half time.
HALF-TIME: Heriot’s Rugby 14 – 14 Watsonians
Watsonians found their stride quickly in the second half and through a powerful series of phases from the backs, the ball was brought over the line by Campbell Wilson. Lee Millar got the extras.
A response from the hosts came almost immediately with a strong drive over the whitewash in the corner by captain Iain Wilson, getting his second try of the afternoon. The wind made the kick go wide.
An excellent offload from Ross Jones into the hands of Callum Anderson let him sprint down the pitch to score to the side of the sticks, bringing Heriot’s in front for the first time this afternoon. Ross Jones’ kick was successful.
Replacement hooker Ross Graham managed to power his way through the Heriot’s defence to ground the ball over the line. Conversion was wide, bringing the score equal once again.
The hosts were not backing down and they had another quick response. A relentless push past the defence for replacement hooker Euan McLaren re-established the hosts’ lead. Ross Jones kicks the extras.
Just when everyone thought the Watsonians possession was gone, Neil Irvine-Hess managed to scramble the ball and pass out to Jason Baggott who raced over the line. The silence was deafening in the Goldenacre stand as Lee Millar managed a successful kick, bringing the score to 33-all in the last couple of minutes.
After multiple strong phases of defence and attack from both sides, Watsonians kicked the ball out with an equal final score.
FULL-TIME: Heriot’s Rugby 33-33 Watsonians
Referee: Ruairidh Campbell
FOSROC Player of the Match: Ruairidh Leishman (Heriot’s Rugby)
Heriot’s Rugby: Iain Wilson (2), Dan King, Callum Anderson, Euan McLaren
Watsonians: Luis Ball, Jamie Berrisford, Campbell Wilson, Ross Graham, Jason Baggott
Heriot’s Rugby: Ross Jones (4)
Watsonians: Lee Millar (4)
Heriot’s Rugby: Grant Hughes
SATURDAY 22 APRIL: SOUTHERN KNIGHTS V EDINBURGH RUGBY A
It was grey skies at the Greenyards as the game got underway with Southern Knights eager to get their first win of the FOSROC Super Series Sprint but Edinburgh started with dominance. After a clean throw in from Edinburgh’s Patrick Harrison a driving maul push the visitors over the try line with Harrison getting the first points on the board. Bruce Houston’s kick was successful and the full seven points were on the board for the visitors in the first three minutes.
Edinburgh applied pressure on Knights and continued to dominate the scrums. Matt Currie finds the gap in the Knights defence to add the second try of the game for Edinburgh. Houston is successful once again with his conversion.
As quick as lightening Cam Jones intercepted the ball intended for Knights Robbie Chalmers and sprinted to the try line planting the ball directly under the sticks. Successful conversion once again by Houston.
An excellent offload from Edinburgh’s Lafferty allowed tighthead Angus Williams to add the fourth bonus point try to the scoreboard. Houston goes four for four as the ball soared through the sticks for the extras.
Edinburgh continued to apply pressure and a driving maul of orange helped Patrick Harrison over the line for the second time in the game. Hosuton’s kick goes wide, and he is unsuccessful for the first time.
Knights entered Edinburgh’s 22 in the final five minutes and took full advantage of the Edinburgh 14-man squad as Ethan Reilly was showed a yellow card for a high tackle. The Knights drive and determination finally paid off and they added their first try of the game to the scoreboard courtesy of Allan Ferrie. Callum Grieve’s kick was successful and it flew through the posts and the hosts entered the break with some points on the board while Edinburgh remained in a 26 point lead.
HALF-TIME: Southern Knights 7 – 33 Edinburgh Rugby A
Knights found their stride quickly as they came into the second half wanting to increase their point total as Rory Brand found an opening on the left while Edinburgh were distracted and brought the ball over the line. The conversion kick was successfully made by Grieve for a second time.
Edinburgh throwing away penalty opportunities which allowed the Knights to continue to build pressure in their 22. A driving maul over the last five metres allowed Ben McLean to ground the ball over the line. Another fine conversion from Callum Grieve.
Edinburgh were quick to retaliate as Jerry Blyth-Lafferty powerfully pushed his way through the Knights defence to score the first Edinburgh try of the second half. Extras added by Houston.
The visitors try streak continued as they travelled across the pitch, a small kick from Lewis Wells allowed Nathan Sweeny to find space as he accelerated to the corner and over the try line. Houston’s golden boot gets the conversion once again.
A second yellow card for Edinburgh goes to Sam Wallace for purposely slowing play as the Knights continued to force the Edinburgh defence to work hard as they remained relentless in a series of powerful plays.
Edinburgh made strides on the pitch as the clock ticked over the 80-minte mark and it looked possible that they could secure some final points before the final whistle however they were unable to turn play into points. A yellow card was showed for Knights Clark Skeldon and he would finish the game in the sinbin
With no points added in the final fifteen minutes of the game Edinburgh Rugby secured the win and finished their time in the FOSROC Super Series Sprint with all three games in hand.
FULL-TIME: Southern Knights 21 – 47 Edinburgh Rugby A
Referee: Finlay Brown
FOSROC Player of the Match: Jerry Blyth-Lafferty (Edinburgh Rugby)
Southern Knights: Allan Ferrie, Rory Brand, Ben McLean
Edinburgh Rugby A: Patrick Harrison (2), Matt Currie, Cam Jones, Angus Williams, Jerry Blyth-Lafferty, Nathan Sweeney
Southern Knights: Callum Grieve (3)
Edinburgh Rugby A: Bruce Houston (6)
Southern Knights: Clark Skeldon
Edinburgh Rugby A: Ethan Reilly, Sam Wallace