Sunday 20th September
Paisley 0- 48 Garnock
In perfect conditions for rugby, Paisley kicked off the match towards the car park end of the pitch. The kick was fielded by Alex Montgomery and Garnock began their first attack up field which ended up in a knock on giving a scrum to the home side. The next few minutes were scrappy with the ball in the hands of the forwards with neither side giving ground. Around the 5th minute, Paisley’s biggest forward was stopped in his tracks by a Struan Reekie tackle. Garnock’s forwards piled in to the break down and won the ball cleanly giving Aidan Brindley the chance to move the ball along the backs finishing in the hands of Dale Crawford who stepped his opposite number and ran in a try beneath the posts which Aidan duly converted.
If Struan’s tackle set the tone for Garnock’s dominance in the tackle area, the next piece of play by the Garnock pack stamped their authority on the larger Paisley forwards. The Paisley no. 8 took the ball and drove hard at the middle of Garnock’s defence. Expecting to make ground, he was stopped in his tracks and held up by Allan Blyth. The Garnock pack piled in quickly and drove the Paisley forwards back fully 30 metres before the ball was fumbled by Paisley resulting in Garnock being awarded the scrum. From the scrum, the ball went quickly from scrum half through the Garnock backs’ hands resulting in another unconverted score for Dale.
The rest of the half was hard fought though the Garnock set piece, particularly the scrum, was becoming dominant giving the Garnock backs good clean ball which they made good use of scoring two further tries before the break.
The second half began as the first ended with Paisley running hard at the Garnock defence but struggling to make ground. First up tackles were made and the Garnock forwards were winning more than their fair share of ball at the breakdown, cleanly securing their own ball and turning over Paisley on theirs.
Towards the end of the match, Garnock opened up and played some great rugby with the ball going through the hands of both forwards and backs resulting in good ground being made. One of these moves involving Connor Wilson, Jack Gilmour, Finlay Latter, Allan Blyth and Cameron Shaw resulted in Aidan Brindley sprinting beneath the posts for a great team try.
Further tries went to Struan Reekie, Greig Barr, Dale Crawford and Allan Blyth before the referee blew his whistle to end the match.
This was a good performance from the Garnock side, showing a great team spirit and sheer hard work in the forwards getting on top of a bigger pack. The backs looked slick and had a real awareness of their roles and looked comfortable putting the ball through the hands. The performance was particularly encouraging since we kept a big, competitive Paisley side scoreless and also since Garnock had three boys making their first competitive start so well done to Finlay, Max and Jamie. Stiffer tests will follow but this was a great step forward.
Garnock team : 1. Alex Morrison 2. Connor Wilson 3. Grieg Barr 4. Cameron Shaw 5. Jack Gilmour 6. Finlay Latter 7. Robbie Young 8. Allan Blyth 9. Aidan Brindley 10. Struan Reekie 11. Jamie Thompson 12. Dale Crawford (capt) 13. Max Smith 14. Trialist 15. Alex Montgomery.