Ayr 45 – 18 Dundee High Rugby – Match Report (kind of…)

Match report not available (in normal format) as normal contributors were doing non rugby things inexplicably during the season. 😎 But I have a few observations…

This group of young men are as committed to the Club as has ever been the case. They tried their best and tried very hard and for that we are very grateful. Thank you all!

They are also coached very well headed up by the only level 4 coach north of Edinburgh and a team of coaches as good as we have ever had at the Club. At the final whistle they were gutted as were the coaching team and Dundee supporters. They gave their all as some of the injuries will attest. This season is different with the introduction of the amateur Super 6 teams and no one really knows or knew how this will pan out. The volunteers who run our Club need more support not sniping from the sidelines. I nearly said touch lines but that would be wrong! We don’t need people paying lip service to a one club structure but acting differently. How long can the same people be expected to continue? One committee volunteer member said candidly, “not long!”

So what happens next? This Club is run extremely well and we have many recent initiatives that are successful. We have a vision for the Club that will be implemented. BUT we need more people to come on board and contribute. What we don’t need are armchair critics who do nothing. Our volunteers do an amazing job donating thousands of hours to running the whole Club.

Please get in touch and volunteer whether you have 2 hours a week or more to donate there is a position for you. The match report concludes with this thought. We approach our 140th anniversary as a Rugby Club. To ensure we have a longer future we need more volunteers including people to take on senior positions within the committee. Its easy……get in touch. Ayr beat us on the park on Sat but they are also beating us off the park as well. Discussion anyone?

1st XV vs Ayr| Saturday 28 September | 3pm

15 – Kieran Scoular
14 – Ruaridh Hood
13 – Sean Gauld
12 – Rory McGinn
11 – Gavin Ross
10 – Paul Kerr
9 – Danny McGinn

1 – Jack Newth
2 – Andy Elton
3 – James Shellard
4 – Iain Lockhart
5 – Angus Thomson
6 – Finlay Ormiston
7 – Tim Brown
8 – Gav Hughan

Replacements

16 – Ceillem Stewart
17 –
18 –
19 – Finlay Jacobs
20 – Andrew Hamilton

Volunteer Opportunity – Head of small fundraising

Volunteers are at the centre of all our Rugby activity across all 3 strands of our Club including our collaboration partners Morgan RFC. We have a new post we would like to fill in this regard.

Head of small fundraising.

This is an important new position that will seek to organise our ability to raise small amounts of money for all sorts of good projects. This would include the Mayfield Lotto, raffles, scratch cards, RWC type opportunities, six nations, online games and score casts. Hopefully lots more ideas!

If you have a couple of hours a week to donate to the development of Rugby in Dundee, the ability to organise and motivate a small team of fellow vols then please drop me an email – gerry@ppinvest.co.uk

Rugby in Dundee is changing. Come and be a part of it.

Dundee High Rugby 20 – 38 Boroughmuir – Match Report

Mayfield was in splendid nick on Saturday afternoon, the sun was out, the playing surface immaculate and a manageable breeze blowing down the ground towards the city.

The pre match lunch boasted an ex- president and ex-captain’s table with such worthies as Bob Gray, Gordon Low and Ally Nicol. Ally’s dad and ex-president Dave couldn’t join the gang as he was on duty at the gate, what service.

Also putting in an appearance: well freeloading at the school table, was a high school full back from a previous age, Robbie Arthur. Robbie looked to be in better shape than when he played but his chat was just as bad.

The good weather had brought out a number of spectators, many in summer outfits but the winner in the style stakes was Derek Gore for his splendid butterfly shirt.

And so to the game, Dundee were playing with the wind first half but got off to a dreadful start with the away team attacking from the off to score under the posts. The try goaled 0-7

The Dundee team looked busy in the backs but inexperienced and lightweight upfront which certainly dictated how the home side performed. Throughout the game High struggled to gain parity with the Muir pack but ran any possession they had.

This led to a game that was disjointed and peppered with errors, BUT very entertaining.

So back to the game, despite being under the pump in the tight, Dundee broke from scrum half with Danny McGinn surging forward before kicking ahead. The kick is only as good as the chase and this was a belter with Tim Brown harassing the away side into conceding a pen, duly converted by Paul Kerr 3-7.

Boroughmuir came roaring back with their man of the match and hooker Dylan Powell to the fore. Pressure from a line-out saw the away side slide left and score 3-14.

Now Muir upped the ante with greater intensity and structure, Dundee countered with fearless defence, with a special mention for full back Callum Nicol.

With the increasing pressure came a penalty for Muir, converted by their 10 Robin Werrsma 3-17.

Dundee continued to press with whatever ball they got and multiphase play in Muir’s red zone led to a defensive infringement and another 3 points for the home side 6-17.
Dundee finished the half running from deep with great ambition but poor accuracy. 6-17

The second half started as the first had finished with Dundee determined to play sevens and Muir powerful, structured and patient.

And so came another Muir score as a move from deep by Dundee foundered and Dundee went further behind despite a suspicion of off-side, 6-24.

I have seen Dundee teams drop their collective heads at this point, but not this young side. Displaying great heart they pushed deep into Muir territory to win a pen in front of goal. So what did the playbook tell them to do? Kick to the corner of course. They won it and after 3 phases scored beside the posts, touched down by Finlay Jacobs, extra 2 from Kerr 13-24

Substitute prop Graeme Craig went off injured leading to uncontested scrums, which favoured the home side. From their next possession Dundee surged from half way with lock Angus Thomson going under the sticks, duly converted 20-24.

Muir came straight back and scored off a scrum, was there a hint of forward passing? But with no assistants to help him the ref called it as he saw it, converted 20-31.

Boroughmuir finished the scoring late in the game to make the final tally 20-38

All in all a great afternoon’s entertainment but enthusiasm and guts are not enough. Points come from possession, structure and accuracy. Let’s hope this young Dundee team can harness these strengths and start to bag some points, their heart deserves them.

1st XV vs Boroughmuir | Saturday 21 September | 3pm

15 – Callum Nicol
14 – Ruaridh Hood
13 – Kieran D’Aeth
12 – Andrew Hamilton
11 – Callum Hoffie
10 – Paul Kerr
9 – Danny McGinn

1 – James Shellard
2 – Andrew Elton
3 – Stuart Cameron
4 – Iain Daniel
5 – Angus Thomson
6 – Fraser Black
7 – Tim Brown
8 – Finlay Ormiston

Replacements

16 – Ceillem Stewart
17 – Graeme Craig
18 – tbc
19 – Finlay Jacobs
20 – Rory McGinn

Gordon Stewart

Gordon Buchanan Stewart, Born 1937, educated Dundee High School. After National Service in the Royal Scots Borderers 1956 – 58 played a few games for the Club before settling in Edinburgh with a career in Insurance and played for Musselburgh Rugby Club. He then joined Currie Rugby Club and was a staunch committee man and became their President.

Gordon passed away on 10th September 2019. Funeral service Wednesday 25th September at 11 a.m. at Mortonhall Crematorium Main Chapel.

Watsonians 39-16 Dundee High Rugby – Match Report

Our first away game today, against another Super 6 franchise, this time Watsonians, saw us rolling up to Myreside, Edinburgh. One of the biggest pitches in Scottish rugby, some renovations were underway at both ends of the ground – whether in readiness for Super 6, or a hangover from Edinburgh Warriors’ recent occupation, being unclear.

What was clear, however, was that it was yet again a makeshift Dundee team, patched together as injuries and unavailability once more took a heavy toll on a club which is looking threadbare in numbers up front, especially in the front row. Both starting props from last week’s starting XV were out injured, as was the hooker, meaning debuts for props Scott Teister and Stuart Cameron (the latter off the bench), and a return for veteran Davie Mason as replacement hooker. The backs had a more familiar look, with exciting prospect Callum Hoffie making his first start on the wing in place of Callum Nicol, and Hammy taking over at centre from Sean Gauld.

Team 15 – Kieran Scoular, 14 – Callum Hoffie, 13 – Duncan McIntyre, 12 – Andrew Hamilton, 11 – Ruaridh Hood 10 – Paul Kerr, 9 – Danny McGinn

1 – James Shellard, 2 – Andy Elton, 3 – Scott Teister, 4 – Cameron Fraser, 5 – Finlay Ormiston, 6 – Stuart Barlow (capt.), 7 – Fraser Black, 8 – Lewis McNamara

Replacements 16 – Davie Mason, 17 – Stuart Cameron, 18 – Angus Thomson, 19 – Rory McGinn, 20 – Finlay Jacobs

Dundee won the toss, and elected to play with the wind blowing strongly down Myreside. A long range penalty from stand off Paul Kerr, wind-assisted, after 4 minutes edged us in front, but not for long. Following the restart, our set scrum creaked under pressure, and the large specimen that is Watsonians 2nd row Kieran Watt broke through the Dundee midfield and looked set to score before being felled inches out by a strong covering tackle from Dundee’s No. 15, Kieran Scoular. Alas, this just delayed the inevitable, as after a couple of recycles, scrum half Willie Thomson popped over for an unconverted try to make it 5 – 3 to the home side.

Frustratingly, Dundee’s No. 4, Cameron Fraser, making his debut, had been injured in the lead up to the score and limped off to be replaced by Angus Thomson, a near ever present last season but making his first 1st XV appearance of this season.

It got worse. After 15 minutes, an accidental high tackle on hooker Andy Elton resulted in a twisted neck, and a few minutes later he had to leave the fray to be replaced by Davie Mason. In the interim, a second Kerr penalty had let Dundee get their noses in front once more, 6 – 5.

Dundee were now having their best spell of the game. A Kerr chip ahead, taken on at pace, engineered a half overlap out wide, but a knock on put an end to the move. A lineout steal moments later led to a Lewis Macnamara break, and a flip to Kerr, whose pass to supporting scrum half Danny McGinn was kicked through and flopped on over the line by the No. 9  for Dundee’s opening try. Kerr duly converted and it was 13 – 5 to Dundee after 25 minutes.

Unfortunately, moments later Dundee’s injury jinx hit yet again. After winger Ruaridh Hood had bravely snuffed out a wickedly bouncing Watsonians kick ahead deep in his own 22,  captain Stuart Barlow took a knock and had to leave the field, with replacement prop Stuart Cameron coming on to make his debut. As Dundee struggled to regroup and reorganise, Watsonians camped on their line, and Dundee’s valiant defence finally leaked an unconverted touch down, making it 10 – 13 after 33 minutes.

Watsonians were soon back on Dundee’s 22 metre line, but for once Dundee used the wind well as Kieran Scoular’s clearing kick took play from our 22 to theirs. A Dundee scrum penalty on the stroke of half time followed, after a good ruck clear out by No. 1 James Shellard, letting Dundee’s Man of the Match Kerr slot his 3rd penalty, to make it Watsonians 10, Dundee 16 at the break.

Half time reflections: Injury hit Dundee are down to the bare bones up front, and with the bigger Watsonians pack having the wind in their sails for the next 40 minutes, the feeling was Dundee would do well to hold out.

And so it proved. It  seemed Watsonians were over the try line right from the off, but somehow they were held up by some mongrel Dundee defence. The resulting scrum 5 metres out was the trigger for  a series of ‘penalty’ scrums for Watsonians there, as Dundee’s makeshift pack struggled to hold them, during which time referee McIntosh eventually yellow carded Dundee No.1 Shellard as Watsonians kept on trying, but failing, to secure the pushover (or penalty!) try. Finally, Dundee were somehow awarded a penalty of their own as yet another scrum wheeled, and gratefully cleared their lines. Frustratingly, a squint throw at the resulting lineout let Watsonians fire up their scrum once again, but this time they more sensibly moved the ball along the line and centre Ferguson broke through the short handed Dundee defence for an unconverted try. Dundee were still 1 point up at 16 – 15 ahead, but looking distinctly groggy, with half an hour still to go.

Watsonians duly scored once more against Dundee’s 14 men (I made it 13 minutes our prop was off for, one of the problems of not having neutral touch judges) and the conversion made it 22 – 16 in their favour. Next it was Fraser Black’s turn to limp off injured, with Hammy moving to the back row and Rory McGinn coming on in the centre.  And to complete the wholesale changes, replacement Angus Thomson also had to depart, forcing Stuart Barlow back on, with Danny McGinn also being replaced by Finlay Jacobs.

Barlow’s return did not last long. The attempt to free his foot from a clinging Watsonians’ arm being deemed overly violent by the referee, his ensuing yellow card meant he had another 10 minutes to spend on the sidelines.

The wheels were now coming off an inevitably disorganised Dundee side as the mounting injuries, combined with 2 yellow cards, and the difficult windy conditions, took their expected toll. Watsonians went over for 3 more tries in the last 10 minutes as the depleted Dundee team finally cracked. Fittingly, there was then only time for 1 last Dundee player, Ruaridh Hood, to leave the field injured, before the final whistle then blew. Final score Watsonians 39 Dundee 16.

Reflections So, by this correspondent’s count, 6 Dundee players left the pitch injured, plus there were 2 yellow cards. For a makeshift team low on confidence, it became too much for them to cope with in the last quarter. But, trying to look on the bright side, it’s worth noting that we were still within 6 points of Watsonians with only 10 minutes to go, despite all these problems. Nevertheless, some plain speaking at the end by the coaches needed saying, and let’s see how well the guys can respond and pick themselves up for a tough game next week against another Super 6 club side, Boroughmuir.

1st XV vs Watsonians | Saturday 14 September | 3pm

15 – Kieran Scoular
14 – Callum Hoffie
13 – Duncan McIntyre
12 – Andrew Hamilton
11 – Ruaridh Hood
10 – Paul Kerr
9 – Danny McGinn

1 – James Shellard
2 – Andy Elton
3 – Scott Teister
4 – Cameron Fraser
5 – Finlay Ormiston
6 – Stuart Barlow (capt.)
7 – Fraser Black
8 – Lewis McNamara

Replacements

16 –
17 – Stuart Cameron
18 – Angus Thomson
19 – Rory McGinn
20 – Finlay Jacobs