Cup game @ Dalziel Park, 21/1/12 - Match photos
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￼Road to Murrayfield ends before it starts
After the frustration of last week’s late call off, Dalziel finally played their first fixture since November when Dumfries travelled up the M74 for the first of two visits within a week. While next week will be a welcome return to league business, this was the romance of the West Regional Cup.
The Dalziel Park pitch was damp, and the weather appeared to have improved as kick off approached, however, within minutes of the start, all in attendance at Dalziel Park were huddled at the rear of the stand as the heavens opened and the wind picked up to batter those on the pitch.
Dumfries had the wind behind them in the opening exchanges and utilised it effectively to keep Dalziel in their half. Dalziel were not to be beaten and put in a sterling defensive effort to keep Dumfries out. Unfortunately, after multiple phases, Dalziel infringed at a five metre scrum and a Dumfries player reacted to take the penalty quickly to crash over for the opening score. The try was converted and Dalziel found themselves down 7-0.
Due to the wind, Dalziel were not able to kick for territory and were relying on probing runs from Kyle Matheson and James Baxendale to gain ground. This tactic was paying off, but Dalziel were showing signs of their training environment by playing narrow and not utilising the full width of the pitch. This allowed Dumfries to soak up the attack and repel Dalziel.
Soon Dumfries had turned over the ball and mounted a counter attack. Their inside centre cut a devastating line through the static Dalziel defence to score fifteen metres from the touchline. The conversion was missed, but Dalziel were further behind.
From the restart Dumfries infringed and John Harris push Dalziel towards the try line with a kick to touch. Kris Watters secured his own lineout ball and the Dalziel pack set up the drive. Dalziel were nearing the line when the maul fragmented and the attacking momentum was lost. Unfortunately, as the attack broke down, second row Eddy Ferguson infringed and was yellow carded by the referee. Half time came and the score was 12-0 to the visitors.
The second half was uneventful with both teams canceling each other out in attack, with neither team encroaching on the other’s five metre line. Shortly after half time, Ryan Watters replaced Scott Johnstone to make his First XV debut and a remarkable progression from the Under 18s through all four senior XVs this season.
Dumfries pushed to kill the game off and were only afforded two penalties which were successfully converted to extend their lead to 18-0. Soon after the second, the referee blew for full time and Dalziel’s short cup adventure was over for another year.
Dalziel were rusty and showed that they hadn’t played for number of weeks, whereas Dumfries had the benefit of a 16-16 draw with Kirkcaldy the previous week. Dalziel improved as the game went on, and should provide a sterner test for Dumfries next week.
Match Sponsored by:
Ball Sponsored by:
David Irvine, Craig Lewis, Les Barclay, Eddy Ferguson, Kris Watters, Kris Hughes, Crawford Reid, Craig Simmonds, Andy McLaren, John Harris, Scott Johnstone, Kyle Matheson, Ross Westwood, James Baxendale, Robert Simpson
Subs: George Sloan, Stephen Baird, Euan Stewart, Ryan Watters, Ross Donnachie
Yellow Cards: Eddy Ferguson
Man of the Match: Crawford Reid
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