Broughton Women kept up the impressive start to their year with a 43-5 win over Glasgow University at Wardie which included 7 tries.
Glasgow University travelled across the M8 (in cars as one of their Committee forgot to book the bus!!) to take part in this friendly fixture, arranged following the scheduled Student’s National League match also due to be played in the Capital being called off earlier in the week.
With both teams keen to play and keep their players ticking over without burning them out, both Coaches agreed to play 3 x 20 minute periods and this involved Broughton playing up hill in two of them!
With the sun shining and the pitch looking in perfect condition, the match was underway with the shrill of the Spanish match official Rodrigo Royo’s whistle – his first ever on Scottish soil.
There was a welcome return to the Broughton side for Durand, coming back after a serious knee injury and debuts for Kandemiri & Gaskell.
Glasgow had much of the opening possession but most of that was contained within their own half, with aggressive Broughton defence asking many questions of the Students.
Kinghorn & Durand almost pounced on an early Glasgow mistake in their dead ball area when a misplaced pass from the scrum half put their full back under intense pressure and she just managed to get the ball clear to save a score.
The opening try wasn’t far away. Broughton were awarded a penalty on the Glasgow 22 which Smith took on. From the recycled possession at the ruck, the ball quickly went through the hands of Kinghorn, Callaghan and Walls who set up Heard. The lass from Selkirk was caught a couple of metres away from the line but the supporting Kinghorn was on hand to take the ball over the line, bouncing off two defenders before twisting over the line. 5-0. Roche was unlikely with the conversion from out on the touchline.
The Students rallied and were desperate to finish the opening period on level terms at least. Their complete front row had individual attempts to breach the Broughton whitewash but the home defence was resolute.
Now, X-Factor has been known to unearth raw recruits and turn them into stars. Debutant Gaskell, playing in the 2nd row, showed tremendous energy, skill and sheer determination with her no-nonsense style. Remember where you seen her name first!
Gaskell was instrumental in setting up Broughton’s second try. A bursting run took her to the Glasgow 22, before Smith rumbled up and cleaned out her counterpart. Roche and Greer teamed up to drive forward before the ball worked it’s way across the field for Walls to open her account. 10-0.
Gaskell once again was in the thick of it setting up the ruck which led to Walls doubling her tally within a 5 minute spell. Heard and Kinghorn showed fantastic understanding of each other with their 9 to 10 interaction then putting in the on-rushing Walls who ran in from the 22, brushing aside the Glasgow 14 before scoring. Roche attempted to make it third time lucky with the conversion kick and perhaps the Referee felt sorry for her but he adjudged that the ball had went over the crossbar! 17-0.
Walls made it a hat-trick on the half-hour with another trade mark sprint which ripped through the heart of the Glasgow defence, turning both the No. 14 and 13 inside out before scoring under the posts. There was absolutely no doubt over Roche’s conversion attempt which followed! 24-0.
What happened next was a sight to behold for those lovers of the game who enjoy rugby at it’s best. A tap penalty taken by the Glasgow No.5 saw her square up to Broughton Prop Smith and the look on the face of the match official (see pictures elsewhere) at the point of impact tells it’s own story! Smith just couldn’t get her arms around the 2nd rower and it was the Glasgow player who appeared to have won the battle. Nicholls and Roche came in quickly and wrapped up the Student before any further damage could be inflicted. Smith simply dusted herself down and got on with the game, which was about to produce it’s next try.
Kinghorn went for a traditional Garry Owen kick, with the ball being given a good thump with the boot. The Glasgow full back got in all sorts of problems with this, and Kinghorn gauged the trajectory of the ball before allowing it to bounce kindly into her arms before hot-footing it to the try-line. Roche once again obliged with the extras. 31-0.
It was another score for Walls in the last play of the second period as Broughton extended their lead to 36 without loss.
Glasgow looked as if they were putting together a useful break out of defence move but a Kinghorn textbook tackle saw her lift the Uni Prop and march her back a good 5 metres or so before unceremoniously dumping her on the hallowed turf. From the knock-on, the Broughton scrum produced another fine back line handling display allowing Walls to run in her 4th try of the day. 36-0.
The final Broughton try came in the 42nd minute and it was potentially the try of the match. Gaskell attempted to find touch with a penalty kick however (erm, lets blame the wind?) the ball drifted back into the middle of the Glasgow 22. The Glasgow Full Back clearly didn’t fancy the sprint down the slope and opted to kick back to a welcoming Greer who pulled the ball out of the air and quickly put Kinghorn on her way. With 30 metres or so to run in, another future Scotland talent pinned her ears back leaving a handful of Glasgow backs in her wake. Roche converted to take the score to 43-0.
With a few minutes left on the clock, Glasgow scored a consolation try in the bottom corner from a tap penalty, with the big No 5 using her sheer upper body strength to bulldoze her way over the line for her first try for the University side.
Final Score – Broughton WRFC 43 – 5 Glasgow University WRFC