Watsonian Lassies Brave A Breezy Post-Burns Sunday

Fresh from her triumphant "Response from the Lassies", Kath Vass is on reporting duties:Fresh from her triumphant "Response from the Lassies", Kath Vass is on reporting duties:

Sunday, 28th. January, 2007 WFC Ladies v GHA, report by Kath Vass.

Apart from a strident breeze that helped blow away the post- Burns Supper cobwebs, there was a sense of calm as a slow stream of cars were collected from the Club car-park on Sunday. The team were ready and enthusiastic as the referee blew to start the game. The Ladies impressing by putting out a full side, plus three subs, against the Visitors??™ fourteen. It was also good to see Stewart Robertson looking spry after his overuse injury precipitated by the 2nds routing of Goldenacre.

Watsonians, against the wind in the first half, played on a surface much-improved by the breeze and made it quickly in to the opposition??™s 22. Kept out by a sturdy GHA defence a resulting lineout was superbly taken by Steph Garnett, an excellent throw-in flying safe in to her hands. Staying well inside the GHA half, struggling with the wind and the poor hands of both sides meant a large number of scrums. Lucky for GHA they managed to get the ball away, where it flew, wind-assisted in to the sure arms of International Squad-member Alex Pratt.

A short, fast burst up the pitch was followed by a slow incremental advance as GHA gave away penalties galore. A fine scrum and drive lead to the first score by Joyce "Come On Maroon" Shute. Her blown away conversion attempt giving the score after 25 minutes of 5 ??“ 0. A high point of her half surely, as well as the fantastic dummy she sold the GHA outside centre that made a passing parent stop and admire her skill.

Quotes from the sideline at this point in the game were general comments ???Horrendous pass??? (Galloway), ???Scrappy??? (Garsed), later echoed by the referee. Other quotes cannot be mentioned as they were about the previous night??™s festivities and would possibly be libellous.

Near the end of the first half saw a change of personnel as consistent Natalie Nicholls was replaced by the supper-vet Sheena Buchanan. Two minutes later another substitution occurred forced by the injury to Clare Murray, ably replaced by Kesh. As Murray, showing gritty determination, bravely took herself of the park, the no. 2 Cookie was assisted off with the result of a dislocated jaw. Happily reinstated it still caused her enough problems for her to be kept off the pitch for the rest of the game. Nicholls barely had time to put her turbo top on before she was racing out on to the park again.

Offside by GHA saved the WFC Ladies??™ blushes again as a sure intercept pass was on. Luckily, the inexperience of the GHA side resulted in numerous penalties and multiple opportunities for the home side.


Just as Sonians had done before them, GHA started the second half against the wind, but with new vigour repeatedly testing the Sonians line. After ten minutes of excellent defence, Sonians slipped and let the GHA 17 over. No conversion: 5 - 5. And the game was level again.

Clare Murray returned to the pitch at outside centre after treatment, and her sure hands lead to a series of passes via Emmas Evans and Jones, out wide to the speed machine that is Gemma Ryde. A roaring run up the left wing, scooted her in for the score with a GHA player close on her heels waiting for any mistake. No need. Score 10-5.

A long kick by the GHA 9, taken again by Pratt, was lost at the ruck. But an offside call against GHA meant a quick take and out to the right wing allowed borrowed player Annabelle to power away from the defensive cover. Again no conversion but Sonians were starting to pull away, 15 ??“ 5. With still another quarter to go.

The kick-off reception went out wide along the line to Pratt, who was bundled out into touch. A successful GHA line was overcome as Sonians won the ball. A feed by Alex Pratt, just inside the Watsonians half, to Ryde, a sweet side-step and she was away again in to the top corner. Unfortunately, the effort was too much for her recurring quad injury and she had to leave the field. 25 minutes in to the second half and the score is 20 ??“ 5.

Thirty minutes and tempers were fraying somewhat, luckily no cards were shown but a severe talking-to by the referee to a Sonian player in our own 22 made this reporter fear the worst. A penalty against the home side could have meant a score against the general run of play, but a strong driving scrum after another knock-on pushed GHA back towards the 22. Another scrum by WFC, a break by the captain with a slick pass to Emma Evans. The ball then carried across the pitch to Shute, Kesh and in to Sophie Hodgson, but no score at this point.

The scrappy play was still throwing up scrum after scrum, WFC driving well after a good initial hit. The game seemed to be camped for a long time on the far right side of the pitch at the midway line. As they moved forward a flying tackle on Suzie Grady forced her to retire with a wrist injury. Not long after that, borrowed Annabelle again far out right powered away from a tired GHA defence and scored . FINAL SCORE 25 ??“ 5.

Published: 30/1/07