Cass’ men go hunting Hawks

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IT’S back to league business for Selkirk RFC tomorrow and a trip to Anniesland is in the offing for Brian Cassidy’s men.

Currently sitting in fourth place on the table, the Souters are looking for a victory against Glasgow Hawks as they resume their bid to make it into the top two places.

“We can’t afford any slip-ups now,” said Cassidy. “It’s a case of hunting them down and there’s no better place to start than Glasgow on Saturday.”

Last weekend, Selkirk managed to maintain their unbeaten record in the RBS Borders Regional Cup after being pushed close in a 21-14 victory over Hawick YM at Mansfield Haugh.

Cassidy added: “The game turned into a bit of a dogfight but it helped clear the tubes and a win’s a win.

“The boys know what they have to do tomorrow and I’m confident they can deliver.”

Playing into a strong wind Selkirk raced to a 14-0 lead after eight minutes with tries from Darren Clapperton and Fraser Harkness, converted by Michael McVie, but a physically committed and street-wise Hawick team grew in confidence as the game progressed.

Soon afterwards, YM put their first points on the scoreboard when skipper Bruce Campbell took a tap penalty and burrowed his way through a clutch of Selkirk defenders for a try.

Errors then began to cost the visitors dear as the Redskins began to raise the tempo. With the Souters continuing to struggle for set piece ball, YM pressed home their advantage. Three successful penalties from the boot of Gregor Welsh brought the scores level with 30 minutes on the clock.

A minute before the interval, Welsh had the chance to put YM into the lead from another penalty, but his attempt was off-target, leaving the half-time score tied at 14-14.

Even with the wind at their backs, Selkirk were finding it hard to break down the Redskins’ defence, and two penalty misses by McVie in two minutes meant the scores were still level going into the final quarter.

The game’s turning point came in bizarre fashion. Dean McCracken’s 22 drop-out kick was blown back towards the YM’s right winger, whose fumble allowed Scott Hendrie to hack the loose ball over the home try line and dive on it to register the visitors’ third try. McVie’s conversion put Selkirk 21-14 ahead.

The final stages of the game were played out in the visitors’ half, with YM applying constant pressure and Selkirk’s players grimly defending their try line.

Just when it looked as though the Redskins were going to make the decisive breakthrough, Selkirk openside Angus Duckett saved the day with a timely turnover under his own goalposts, allowing Michael McVie to boot the ball downfield.

The final whistle eventually sounded, ending what had been an uncomfortable afternoon for the men from Philiphaugh.

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