Match Report - 17 Oct 2009, Ross High Rugby Football Club 1st XV beat Forrester FP
Forrester RFC 18 v Ross High RFC 20
Having got off to the best of starts last week against Trinity, it was the complete reversal on Saturday at South Gyle. Forrester struck within the first 90 seconds, scoring out on the right, while it appeared Ross High heads were still 500 yards up the road in the
changing room. With the Tranent men looking bemused, Forrester piled
on the pressure and it was fortunate for the visitors that the home team could not get the last pass to hand. Subsequently, after ten minutes of non-stop pressure, Ross had managed to limit damages to just the 5 points.
From a High point of view the game altered after they put on a good ‘pundy’ and shunted Forrester back off the ball at a scrum. This seemed to galvanise the Tranent side and they started to up the pace, harried their opponents with more determination, and when they got possession, produce some good cohesive rugby. The first reward was 3 points thanks to a Nick Tinlin penalty. More was to follow in the form of a try by winger Graeme Ashurst, who rounded off a nice passing movement by showing a fine burst of pace to score in the corner.
Ross were now in the driving seat but could never quite relax as Forrester were confident they could regain the advantage and this was emphasised when they were awarded several kickable penalties , only one of which was successful.
With the game level at eight points each, there was everything to play for, and it was the visitors who broke the deadlock to forge ahead in what was one of their best pieces of play. The ball was won by the forwards who rumbled forward, releasing the backs who swept the ball right to Michael Patterson. The tall centre checked, straightened and completely flat footed the Forrester back division who could only watch as he sped in between the posts. Mike Brown converted.
Half time: 8-15
Forrester, now kicking down the slope, were showing determination and put The High under pressure with some slick back play. The Ross matched this with equal defensive determination which lasted for quite an extensive period of time, and the visitors can think themselves fortunate that Forrester spurned three very kickable penalties virtually in front of the posts, preferring to run the ball. It was during this period that the Tranent men showed great character and despite being without several of their ‘stars’, stuck to the task, weathered the storm and increased their lead.
With around fifteen minutes of the half left Ross started to advance up the slope and were unfortunate on two occasions when, firstly No8 Ryan Strachan picked up from the base of a five metre scrum to dive in, but the referee was unsighted and did not allow the try.
Following this. left winger Ashurst span out of a tight situation on the touchline, kicked ahead, chased after the ball, controlled a second hack forward and dived in for a score, only to find this score was also crossed off by the official who decided that the ball had gone over the dead ball line before being grounded. Ross did not get rattled by these close calls, indeed they seemed to stimulate the side into more attacking rugby and eventually it paid off when stand off Brown fed Ashurst, who took off for the line and passed inside to full back Stuart Ross who scored to put his side nine points clear and Forrester needing two scores.
The last few minutes saw the home side throw everything at Ross High who were forced to defend solidly. With two minutes of time remaining Forrester got the elusive score they were after, although it has to be said that the referee was the only person in the park who did not see the blatant crossing which took out stand off Brown. The try was converted by a quickly taken drop kick.
Ross saw out the rest of the game comfortably and took away four valuable points. Considering the number of players unavailable for selection it says much for the players who stepped up. In the backs Mike Brown got his line moving well, with Michael Patterson and Graeme Ashurst lively. The guys who stole the show ,however, were the back row, Chris Miller, Ryan Strachan and Justin Savala, the latter just edging man of the match.
We wish Mikey Patterson a swift recovery from his shattered bone in his left hand pinkie.
Forrester FP 18 - 20 Ross High Rugby Football Club 1st XV