Strathie pick up win in fierce derby clash

Strathmore rugby club.

Strathmore rugby club.

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Strathmore’s first XV made the short journey down the A90 on Saturday to Dundee to take on local rivals Morgan in a must win league encounter for both teams.

Strathmore needed the win to kick start their final push of the season following a couple of league defeats on the bounce, meanwhile Morgan were looking to carry on their winning streak of late.

For the first time in weeks head coach Stewart Ross had a large squad available from which to select his starting XV line-up.

The Inchmacoble boys started the first half strongly playing up hill in very blustery conditions and spent the majority of the half camped in their hosts’ 22, however they never actually managed to get the ball over the try line despite having lots of possession.

It was Morgan who put the first points on the board with a penalty and it stayed that way until half time.

The men in black finally broke through the Morgan defence at the start of the second half with a well-worked try following great rucking from the forwards allowing scrum half Dave Vernon to get a quick ball out to the backs and Colin Strachan to score in the far corner.

Morgan pushed hard to try and get their noses back in front and were rewarded with a couple of penalties which put them 9-5 in front.

Strathie were certainly not finished and after some great counter rucking from Fergus Mitchell Strathmore were awarded a penalty from which Head Coach Stewart Ross decided to go for the three points rather than kick to touch and go for a try.

There were a few grumbles from the strong Strathie support as, if successful, it would have left Strathie still one point behind and only 10 minutes on the clock.

The penalty was scored and it set up a thrilling finale to a fiercely contested game.

Both teams were pushing hard for another score but it was Strathmore who looked more likely and they got their just reward on 77 minutes with a penalty just over the half way line which Stewart Ross tee’d up for kicking at goal.

The large crowd fell silent momentarily before Strathie’s support erupted as Ross calmly slotted the ball over to put Strathmore two points in front and ultimately win the game for them 11-9

Ross was delighted with the win and said: “It was a really important win for us today and we need to carry this in to our next game and until the end of the season.

“The guys put in a great shift and we got what we deserved because of it.”

This Saturday the first XV are home to Gordonians with a 1 p.m. kick off. Meanwhile the Second XV are away to Hillfoots kicking off at 3 p.m.

The U18s host Falkirk in the Caley Cup kicking off at 12.30 p.m. so it will be a busy day down at Inchmacoble.