May 10 2012 by Clare Damodaran, Blairgowrie Adv
BLAIRGOWRIE Rams welcomed Strathmore Sharks from Forfar to JJ Coupar Recreation Park for their final games of the season last weekend.
The Micros, made up of the younger P1s and 2s, gamely took on the P1-3 players from Strathmore in two closely contested matches.
There was great tackling from Ryan Howard and Andrew Wilkie in particular, with Fergus Thomson and Ruairidh Walker making some excellent and imaginative runs, the latter scoring two tries. Loghan McKelvie also ran over for the Micros but unfortunately the Rams lost both matches, 4-7 and 1-2.
The Rams P3 players once again took the opportunity to play with the P4/5 team and the graduates from the largely undefeated Micros continue to show great promise even against bigger players. Although the results on the day were not in Blair’s favour, the games were still keenly fought.
Youngster Archie Thomson ran in a hatrick of tries over three games and David McIntyre’s tackling skills and turn of speed continue to be impressive. Matthew Duncan and Aidan McKelvie also tackled well, and William Learmonth and Byron Hart had good games too. Barry Gillespie was the other try scorer for the Rams but the scores in the end were 2-4 and 2-8.
It was a similar story for the P6/7 team, which included four P5 players. In the first match, the lack of experience of playing together as a team showed and they were slow to start, quickly losing two tries. Austin Barrie managed to break through and score however, lifting the Rams’ spirits. With good tackling and rucking, the Rams started to move up the pitch, but some quick passing and off-loading by Strathie saw them break the Rams defence and score another two tries. Following a good pass out from Aedan Milne from the scrum to captain Leon Bert, Leon managed to get to the try line but needed another pass; an excellent offload to Robbie meant that the try was scored. Strathie hit back however and scored another two tries, taking the final score to 6-2.
The second game started well, with Austin Barrie making an excellent run straight up the middle of the field as soon as the whistle was blown to score a phenomenal try. Good defence by the Rams ensured they held onto their lead but eventually Strathie broke through scoring a number of tries.
In the second half an excellent kick off by the Rams made space for Robbie Smith to make a determined run from the halfway line for another impressive try.
Minutes later, a good run by Aedan Milne and offload to Patrick Damodaran enabled him to make a great run to the corner and over the try line to give the Rams another try. Strathie went on to score another four tries, taking the final score to 8-3.
The S1/2 team finished their fantastic season with another victory.
The first period of play saw a keenly contested opening few minutes before John McLaren broke through a few tackles to score the first try. With the Rams seeing a lot of the ball, Craig Rimmer collected in space and was able to evade the Strathie defence to touch down. The third and final score of the first 15 minutes went to Rory Grant after a powerful run to the line. Two conversions made the score 11–0 for the Rams.
The second period saw both sides opening out to produce some excellent attacking rugby with some fluent handling spells of play. Quick distribution from the Rams led to Rory Grant receiving the ball in space to run in two long range tries. Strathie responded well with direct and powerful running to score their first converted try. With the Rams now competing well to win ball at the scrums and line outs, Fin Allan secured the ball in the middle of the pitch and charged through the Strathie defence to score by the posts. The score for the second period was 11–4.
The game tempo upped further in the third and final period with excellent defence on both sides cancelling out the number of tries scored. However, John McLaren was able to breach the Strathie defence twice for tries following strong runs. Strathie replied with a good try of their own which was converted.
As the game progressed some long down field clearance kicks from the Rams 22 gained good field possession to pin Strathie in their own half. The final period score was 8–4 and the overall score was Rams 30–Strathmore 8.