Sat 14th Oct 2017 - Selkirk V Kelso
BT National League Division 1
Selkirk 24 Kelso 19 half time 10-13
It’s autumn and that was clear to see in the overcast conditions at Philiphaugh where we saw an exciting match with loads of mistakes and some spirited play by both teams in this double header as it counted for the National League 1 as well as Booker Border League points.
The game was bookended by a couple of fine tries. Unfortunately, however, for Kelso you don’t win games with a first minute try but a last minute score can sway the result as it did on this occasion.
Kelso began the game with a great try by wing, Ian Sim, who burst through between the two centres to score near the posts. Craig Dods added the conversion points and he extended Kelso’s lead a few minutes later with a penalty.
Selkirk started to win some ball and when Clinton Wagman came into the line from a lineout, the Selkirk forwards took the ball on and Luke Pettie rumbled over at the posts for Rory Banks to convert. This was followed by a Banks penalty from 40 metres to draw Selkirk level.
Dods, however, restored the Kelso lead with a penalty for Selkirk not releasing the tackled player.
As half time approached, an intervention by the stand side assistant referee, brought a penalty to the visitors which they popped in to the corner only for the throw in to go astray. The changeover had Kelso narrowly in the lead at 13-10.
Selkirk started the second half in fine fettle and they were rewarded for their enterprising play with a try in the corner by Wagman. A wonderful touchline conversion by Banks took the hosts into the lead for the first time.
Kelso chipped away at the lead and a couple of penalties by Dods, firstly for a high tackle on Pierre Ebah and then for not releasing the tackled player, took Kelso back into a slender lead.
Injuries to Andrew Skeen, Angus Common and replacement Ally Johnston did not help the guests’ cause and they conceded a penalty for offside but Banks did not have the power from 45 metres to convert.
As we headed for injury time and deep in the Selkirk 22 area, they threw caution to the wind, after Andy Tait almost disrupted the Selkirk Number 8 pick up. The ball was spun along the line to Wagman, who delighted the home support with a 50 metre burst and, even as the cover was coming across for Kelso, he had the nous to feed full back, Steven Hamilton, who raced over the last 25 metres to score the try to take Selkirk back into the lead. Banks converted to take the score out to 24-19. There were a couple of minutes left but the damage was done for Kelso, who would go home almost empty handed but certainly disappointed as they thought the game was in the bag.
Kelso team: Craig Dods, Ian Sim, Gregor Mein, Pierre Ebah, Ross Cooke, Andrew Skeen, Andy Tait. Blair Robertson, Ross Henderson, Cata Graur, Paudie Lawlor, Angus Common, Josh Irvine , Kevin Dryden, Gregor Mein
Replacements: Kieran Cooney, Sam Karlsen, Ian Wallace, Ally Johnstonand Angus Roberts
Scorers: Ian Sim try with Craig Dods 1 con and 4 pens
Luke Petty, Clinton Wagman and Steven Hamilton tries Rory Banks 3 cons and 1 pen
And finally a few words from Gary Stevens (Head Coach)...
"Another step closer to a great performance from the lads. We playing some good rugby at times however still letting the foot off the pedal at crucial times allowing the opposition some relatively easy scores.
Easily competitive in all areas of the field and deserved to be ahead nearing the final whistle.
The team is understandably disappointed not to finish the game off and take the win but out of the ashes will always be valuable lessons that will need to be realised and rectified before this weekends match vs Cartha.
A good training week ahead will allow us to prepare for another tough game and get us the result we desire."