BT Premiership ROUND-UP | Watsonians take derby spoils
Watsonians got the better of their city rivals, Boroughmuir, after overcoming a 15-point half-time deficit to keep them in the hunt for a home BT Premiership play-off.
If Edinburgh derbies needed any more meaning then a simultaneous championship and relegation play-off challenge was certainly enough to get Boroughmuir and Watsonians fired up.
Both sides opened with hard carrying and some big hits left no doubt of the physicality and commitment we would see over the 80 minutes.
The home side were first on the board after a high tackle gave them an easy shot at goal inside the 22.
More indiscipline would follow from ‘Sonians and Boroughmuir built a platform deep inside opposition territory. The lineout was taken well and some good hands in the backline put McConnell through to stretch the lead to eight with the game’s first try.
Tails up, ‘Muir snaffled lineout ball on the half-way and scampered downfield only to be scragged by the scrambling defence. A spilled ball lifted the pressure and Watsonians escaped without further injury.
Still the visitors made life difficult for themselves as more infringements continued to gift Boroughmuir territory.
It was in the tight that Watsonians saw their first successes and a powerful rolling maul gave them a kickable penalty which they spurned for the chance of more. Their hubris wasn’t rewarded, however, when Boroughmuir stole ball again on their own five metre line.
The home team’s second score was well worked and made by lock, Field, whose power in midfield created the space and slipped pass put ‘Muir in to give them a three-score cushion.
Watsonians’ best efforts before the half were desperately repelled by ‘Muir and the chance of points was denied again by another malfunctioning set-piece
Half Time | Boroughmuir 15 – 0 Watsonians
Watsonians came out firing on all cylinders and their first score came after nine minutes with a feeling of inevitability as they bludgeoned over after patient phase play to cut the deficit to eight.
Another score might not have been far behind but ‘Sonians were let down, again, by a faulty lineout enabling Boroughmuir to clear.
The increasingly tight match-up had to wait until the hour mark for another score when a break from half-way was finished to ensure the scoreboard reflected play, 15-14.
A quick reply from the boot was cancelled out moments later after a high tackle and we would have a grandstand finish.
Watsonians seized the initiative with six minutes to go with a simple try finished by number 8, Michael Fedo, which was converted to leave the home team searching for a seven-pointer.
A missed Watsonians penalty kept hope alive for ‘Muir but the visitors looked the fitter side and they closed the game out well.
Full Time | Boroughmuir 18 – 24 Watsonians
The result means that only two points separate second to fourth in the race for a home play-off.
At the other end of the table Marr have given themselves a slim lifeline and Boroughmuir will take some confidence after Hawick’s loss and a game in hand.
Elsewhere, Marr shocked Currie Chieftains at Malleny Park, Melrose overcame a stiff challenge in Heriots and Ayr’s win over Hawick took the Borderers fate out of their own hands.
Stirling County beat Glashow Hawks in the remaining game.
BT Premiership Results – Saturday 17 February
Currie Chieftains 20 – 24 Marr
Boroughmuir 18 – 24 Watsonians
Ayr 33 – 19 Hawick, Millbrae
Melrose 22 – 17 Heriot’s
Stirling County 32 – 8 Glasgow Hawks