Preview - FOSROC Super6 Round 4
Heriot’s Rugby will open the fourth round of the FOSROC Super6 tomorrow afternoon (Saturday) when they host Stirling County in the first match of the weekend (KO 2pm).
League leaders Watsonians travel to Millbrae to take on the Ayrshire Bulls in a top of the table clash, while the Southern Knights will travel up to Edinburgh to take on third placed Boroughmuir Bears in a match broadcast live on Scottish Rugby TV and on the BBC Sport Scotland website
UPDATE : Heriots Vs Stirling County postponed
Stirling County will be looking to secure a win on the road after falling to halt a Watsonians comeback in the last ten minutes last Sunday.
The visitors have reshuffled their squad from last weekend with Billy Dineen and Murphy Walker coming in to the front-row and Cameron Henderson joining the second-row.
Elsewhere in the pack Dean Taylor-Menzies moves to number eight and Glasgow Warriors Matt Smith is made available to start on the blindside flank.
Andrew Gouldie gets a chance to start at stand-off with Josh Henderson out injured, while Ewan MacGarvie moves to full-back and Andrew McLean starts on the right wing.
Head Coach Ben Cairns said: “There’s been some tough learning after the way things fell apart last Sunday and we’ve had to learn quickly with a six-day turnaround.
“We put ourselves in a very good position with 20 minutes to go [last weekend] and have looked at the reasons why we were not able to close the game out.
“Ultimately, we are about 13 minutes away from sitting three from three at the top of the table, so we know there’s not a lot wrong with our game.
“Heriot’s, I am sure, will be disappointed with how the season has started for them and in particular the way their first home match went.
“We know they will be looking to bounce back this weekend and will put everything in to getting their first win at home.
Hosts Heriot’s Rugby are targeting their first home win of the season.
Head Coach Phil Smith selected his teams for the first three rounds by allowing everyone a start where possible, meaning this is the first time he will have chosen his team based on those early performances.
Edinburgh prop Murray McCallum is being made available to aid their efforts to improve upon their performance against Boroughmuir Bears last weekend.
He said: “The messaging [to the players] this weekend is really simple, be more disciplined and lower our error count.
“The players recognise that these have been our biggest failings in our last two games and having watched the quality of the Stirling set piece in their opening fixtures.
“We simply cannot afford to let them get into their stride in these areas of the game.”
UPDATE : Ayrshire Bulls Vs Watsonians postponed
Top of the table Watsonians travel to the west to coast to face Peter Murchie’s Ayrshire Bulls.
The hosts have once again selected FOSROC Academy stage 3 player Ross Thomson over the experienced Frazier Climo at stand-off with Tom Jordan making his tournament debut at inside-centre.
On the wings Rory Hughes is released by Glasgow Warriors to start on the left wing with Craig Gossman switching to the right.
In the forward pack Blair MacPherson comes in at number 8 with Pete McCallum shifting to the openside.
Hosting the league leaders will be a tough task according to Head Coach, Murchie.
He said: “With three wins from three in the FOSROC Super6 they [Watsonians] have got off to the perfect start, they have displayed character in all of those wins coming from behind on each occasion.
“We were pleased to earn the five points on offer on the road [last weekend] but know that we can still make many improvements. We will need to be on the top of our game on Saturday in what we hope will be a good crowd at Millbrae to get behind the team.”
Watsonians have made six changes with Finn Hobbis, Campbell Wilson and Mike Badenhorst all coming into the pack, Roan Frostwick earns a start at scrum-half, with Kody McGovern (winger) and DJ Innes (centre) starting for the first time too.
Head Coach Fergus Pringle expects a tough fight from the hosts.
He said: “We head to Millbrae for our third away fixture in four games knowing we’ll need a quality performance to come out on top.
“Our squad have shown real character on the road and we want to step up again after a mixed performance against Stirling last weekend.”
Southern Knights will travel to face Boroughmuir Bears this Sunday in search of their first win of the tournament.
The side features just two changes, one in each of the forward and back divisions – experienced full-back Fraser Thomson returns and will captain side, while 15-times capped Edinburgh prop Jamie Bhatti has been released by Edinburgh to add his ballast to the front row.
Knights Head Coach, Rob Chrystie, said: “We have very much focused on ourselves this week and are looking for a much-improved performance.
“We visit Boroughmuir who will be in good spirits after beating Heriot’s last weekend. Their pack are looking well drilled and organised, whilst they have some very good backs that can cause problems if given time and space.”
Boroughmuir Bears have made a number of changes to their winning team.
Rest and rotation is the thinking behind several alterations to the front five, with (position?) David Medjebeur back in the side after Algerian international duties.
The back division is, however, a fairly familiar selection.
Bears Head Coach, Graham Shiel, said: “The players are continuing to push hard for selection, which is a nice challenge for the coaching team.
“We are under no illusions how tough Sunday’s game will be against the Southern Knights.
“We need to keep building performance upon performance. The outcome last week could have been very different. It proves how close the competition is that 30 seconds defined the outcome of the game.”