League game @ Braidholm, 25/8/12 - Match photos - Match Video
Dalziel Suffer Opening Day Defeat
Dalziel travelled through to Braidholm to take on GHA in the opening game of the new RBS Championship A division. Dalziel were handing competitive First XV debuts to new signings Grant Clark and Craig Collin, and Under-18 Grant Stewart. Craig Lewis,was starting his first competitive game at stand off. GHA were also handing debuts to three Under-18s, but also had former Scotland International Andy Henderson at inside centre and Scotland 7s speedster Hefin Oâ€™Hare at full back.
Dalziel started strongly, and pushed GHA back into their half only to give away a penalty and allow the hosts to clear their lines. From a scrum in the centre of the pitch, GHA moved the ball blind and Oâ€™Hare put on the pace to take the ball up to within 20 metres of the Dalziel try line. The ball was offloaded to Craig Sorbie who almost scored, but was tackled by James Baxendale. Oâ€™Hare picked up the ball at the base of the ruck and danced through the defence to open the scoring.
From the restart, GHA maintained possession and took play up into Dalzielâ€™s half. Sorbie put a chip over the top of the Dalziel back line, gathered the ball and offloaded to the onrushing Ranji Jericevich. Jericevich took on Derek McMillan, but in doing so, brought Baxendale into play, and was brought down. With the Dalziel defence out of position, Henderson scooped the ball up to score to the right of the posts to take the score to 14-0.
Dalziel then had a strong period of play, taking the ball through the forwards to put pressure on GHA. However, a loose pass was intercepted by GHA and the chance looked to have gone, but in a moment, Dalziel had won the ball back following great maul work by Grant McCallum. The ball was passed to prop Davie Irvine, who ran in from the 22 metre line, out pacing Henderson in the process. Lewis converted to bring the score back to 14-7.
Dalziel struggled in a couple of scrums following disruptive injuries, and from one scrum gave away a penalty. GHA opted to put the ball into the corner, and from the lineout, score their third try from a driving maul. Dalziel again upped their game and after some powerful running from Clark, Irvine and Crawford Reid, Dalziel spun the ball out to Kris Hughes, who stretched his legs and took the ball to within 10 metres of the GHA try line. As Hughes was tackled, McCallum took the offload and ran into reduce the score 19-14.
As half time approached, Dalziel pressed for the equalising try but good pressure on the midfield saw each attack nullified. From a scrum, GHA moved the ball wide, and from a series of quick rucks, Jamie Auld sneaked over to score his sides fourth try. Half time came and at 24-14, Dalziel knew they were still in the game.
GHA continued to put Dalziel under pressure, not allowing Dalziel a platform on which to build any attacks. GHA attacked again, and Auld added a second, in a similar fashion to his first. This put the score at 29-14 and just out of reach of the Motherwell club.
As the half wore on, and the weather worsened, both teams were cancelling each other out in every facet of the game. Craig Simmonds and George Sloan took the ball up, but Dalziel were unable to capitalise on their efforts.
In the closing stages, Dalziel mounted a series of attacks with Irvine and Eddy Ferguson nearing the line, but GHAâ€™s defence held strong and the game finished 29-14 to the Glasgow side.
What GHA had to say: Report - Photos - Video
David Irvine, Craig Collin, Darren Hay, Eddy Ferguson, Grant Clark, Kris Hughes, Crawford Reid, Craig Simmonds, Andy McLaren, Craig Lewis, James Baxendale, Grant McCallum, Ross Westwood, Derek McMillan, Lee McWhinnie
Subs: George Sloan, Grant Stewart, Fraser McKenzie, Scott Johnstone
Tries: David Irvine, Grant McCallum
Conversions: Craig Lewis (2)
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