Hutchies' Touch Too Much For East Coast Opponents

Just four days after Scotland’s current crop of internationalists took to the Murrayfield turf, some of tomorrow’s talent followed in their bootsteps in the Brewin Dolphin Scottish Schools under-15 finals.

East met west as Stewart’s Melville College – through to the final as the away team winners in their 3-3 semi final draw with Edinburgh Academy – fronted up to Hutchesons’ Grammar School. The Glasgow side, who beat George Watson’s College 10-7 in their semi, aiming to be the first west coast school to win the silverware.

A vociferous crowd – which grew to nearly six thousand – were treated to sixty minutes of non-stop action from both sides, who gave their all to the last.

 

Stewart’s Melville had the first scoring chance of the night after five minutes, however captain Scott Docherty put the penalty attempt wide. A second attempt, following sustained pressure from the Edinburgh side, did clear the bar to put the capital lads ahead 3-0.

With command of the game switching to Hutchies', a perfectly unexpected steal from the scrum saw the Grammar’s number nine, Robbie Blackwood, cross the line. Stand-off George Swankie duly converted to put his side ahead 3-7 after 22 minutes, a score which stood, despite both sides threatening near the opposition lines.

The second half kicked off with all the pressure from Hutchesons’, booting upfield and pushing towards the Stew Mel line, Blackwood again making the most of every opportunity. Their opponents defence held firm, however.

At midpoint in the second half, however, a further break came with a penalty for Hutchesons’ in front of the posts, successfully taken by Swankie, to increase the lead to 3-10.

That score triggered a frantic run of play over the next ten minutes, with Stew Mel finding extra gas in the tank and player a wider, more expansive game. With ten minutes to go the change of tack paid off as a scramble near the Hutchies' line saw Will Kesley’s name on the score sheet. A chance to even the match fell short, however as the conversion failed to clear and the game stood at 8-10.

With two minutes to go the game was still there to be won by either side as the ball was won, fumbled, kicked away and retrieved by both teams and the pressure mounted once more on the Glasgow side. As the clocked ticked over and stopped at 60 minutes, however, it was Stewart’s Melville who buckled under the strain as a run to the line and sure-fire try ended in a fumbled ball on the line, kicked to touch by Hutchesons’ as the whistle signalled the end of the Edinburgh side’s Cup hopes with a final score of 8-10.

Said Stuart Lang, head coach of Hutchesons’ GS after the game: “It’s been an absolutely wonderful experience for all the boys. They worked so hard to get here. The atmosphere among the players has been fantastic and the whole hype around the school has been fantastic. Come on the Weegies!”

Man of the match: Robbie Blackwood (Hutchesons’ Grammar School)

The Brewin Dolphin Scottish Schools Cup Final is the first in the series of top youth rugby action taking place at the home of Scottish Rugby with the National Under-15 and Under-16 Finals (21 February) and National Under-18 Youth Cup Finals (25 April) kicking-off in the coming weeks.
 
Like all Scottish Rugby youth and age-grade representative fixtures, admission to the Brewin Dolphin Scottish Schools’ Cup final on Thursday 11 February was FREE.
  
Hutchesons’ Grammar School
Leo Milton; Jamie Crawford, Conor Forgie, Ruairidh Bottomley VICE CAPTAIN, Toby Buchanan; George Swankie, Robbie Blackwood; Ben White, Ryan Howie, Ilan Selby, Sheryar Awan, Tom McMurtrie, Blair McCarte CAPTAIN, Gordon Campbell, Scott Young
Substitutes
Douglas Connell, Duncan Forrest, Louis Kerr, Ciaran McLaughlin, Robbie Jessiman, Grant Thomson, Paul Smith
 
Stewart’s Melville College
Ryan Frost; Jesper Price, Russell Grant, Scott Murchie, Damon Salmanzedeh; Scott Docherty CAPTAIN, Mark Statham; Will Kesley, Lewis Begbie, Fergus Crawley, Matt Hutcheson, Alex Clayton, Shane Brown, Harry Turner, Mark Lowes
Substitutes
Bruce Gorrie, Graham Wilson, Chris Ward, Ali Scott, Cameron McCall, Simran Wilks, Danny Brown
 
NOTES TO EDITORS:
 
ROUTE TO THE FINAL
Under-15
Stewart’s Melville College
George Heriot’s (A), St Aloysius College (A), High School of Dundee (A), Edinburgh Academy (A)
Hutchesons’ Grammar School
Marr College (H), Bearsden / Douglas Academy (A), Peebles High School (H), George Watson’s (H)
 
Brewin Dolphin
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