In the first of several Edinburgh derby matches in the RBS Premier B division, Watsonians hosted Heriots at Myreside in, what was to be, a fiercely contested match marred by a catalogue of errors. The final scoreline would suggest that Heriots had it all their own way, but the home side spent a fair amount of time inside the visitors 10 metre area, only being held out by a very strong defence.
Watsonians opened the scoring with a few minutes with a penalty from Brian Walls awarded for a ruck infringement to go three points up. That was how the score remained for the next 20 minutes, with Heriots probably having the majority of the possession and coming close on one occasion, but being held out, when only a couple of metres short. With the forwards leading the way, Heriots got the ball out to centre, Colin Goudie, who darted through a yawning gap in the Watsonians defence to score the visitors first try of the afternoon. With Graham Wilson scoring the conversion, Heriots were now 7-3 ahead. The final 15 minutes of the half saw Heriots with the majority of the possession again, but after two dropped balls when only metres out and the try line beckoning, the half time score remained at 7-3.
Watsonians started the second half well, attacking deep into the Heriots half from the off, but lost ball put them on the back foot and another penalty award allowed Wilson to take the score out to 10-3. The next 25 minutes of the match was all Heriots. They put another two tries on the board, one from the forwards, which only the referee was close enough to confirm and one from Wilson. Neither were converted – but probably should have been – and with the score at 20-3 and 12 minutes to go it looked all over for the Myreside men. And that’s how it was. In spite of two Heriots players being yellow carded within a minute of each other – and at opposite ends of the field – the visitors held out Watsonians, near to the try line for most of the time, to finish the match 20-3 ahead and go into second place, one point behind Glasgow Hawks, in the Premier B table.
Mention should also be made of Edinburgh’s 81st minute win in France on Friday night against Racing Metro to put themselves in a very strong position to qualify for the knock-out stages of the Heineken Cup for the first time in eight years. With time up and the score at 24-all, Greg Laidlaw got the ball back to Phil Godman who slotted home a drop kick for the winner to put Edinburgh at the top of their group for, at least, a few hours. With Cardiff winning on Saturday at London Irish, the two RaboRirect PRO 12 teams head the table with 17 points apiece going in to the final round next week.
Photo and Report – John Preece
Web – http://www.photoboxgallery.com/jlp-photography