Dunbar come from behind to take the cup with a 30-24 win over Heriots
Dunbar hosted the three finals of the Edinburgh & Borders Cup, shield and Bowl at Hallhill. Dunbar took to the field against a Heriots team who destroyed Dunbar scoring 70 points at Goldenacre.With a crowd of 300 the final it was hoped that rugby would be at its best for the large support.
Dunbar had both wing forwards missing with Finlay Darrah out injured and jamie crichton on holiday. It made the Dunbar coaches put prop Denham Blair in the back row to support big runner Euan Patrizio.
The weather the previous day had been very cold and misty but the skies cleared and a lovely sunny day welcomed all teams to Dunbar.
Dunbar were immediately pegged back and found themselves defending stoutly against a strong running outfit. The pressure eventually told and Heriots broke out of defence to score at the posts which was converted after 7 minutes. Dunbar to their credit hung in there and had chances to clear but McPhillips poor kicking allowed Heriots to come right back at them. Heriots were awarded a penalty on 25 minutes but the kick went wide of the left post. On 26 minutes Heriots scored again from a good move involving backs and forwards. The conversion from in front of the posts was good and Dunbar found themselves 14-0 down. From a scrum in their own half, Dunbar number 8 Patrizio burst out and fed skipper McPhillips who outstripped the defence to score. The skipper converted his own try to half the deficit.
Heriots were by now conceding a lot of penalties and eventually the referee had no option to show a yellow card for a dangerous tackle. Dunbar had the chance to reduce the difference from a penalty but the kick went wide.
DUNBAR 7 HERIOTS 14
Dunbar needed to get the next score to pressurise their opponents. However Heriots had other ideas as their forwards drove over on 38 minutes to extend their lead. Heriots were awarded another penalty on 42 minutes but the kick again went wide of the upright.
With 45 minutes gone Dunbar hit back through Patrizio as the dangerous number 8 started to show his presence with some strong running. From a quick penalty he recieved the ball and drove over to reduce the deficit.
Straight from the kick off Dunbar came straight up field through Patrizio who made it all the way to the 5 metre line before being brought down but managed to off load to the supporting Murray Perring who scored in the corner. McPhillips was unlucky with his conversion attempt but Dunbar were deservedly level. Heriots came back strongly to score a very easy try due to some bad defence by Dunbar on 51 minutes.
Dunbar still had the bit between their teeth and kept the pressure on and were awarded a penalty. The ball was driven to the line again by Patrizio then it was quickly shipped wide for Kyle Laing to score out wide. McPhillips was again very unlucky with his conversion attempt. With the scores level at 24-24 going into the last 10 minutes it was Dunbar who had looked the more likely. On 61 minutes they were awarded a penalty and McPhillips elected to go for goal which was successful. Dunbar again came back at the visitors and with time running out they were again awarded a penalty which McPhillips again slotted. The referee blew for full time and Dunbar had defied the odds to beat their city rivals.
DUNBAR 30 HERIOTS 24
This was a fantastic achievement for the players, coaches and management of the team who have worked tirelessly all season.It was also great for the game of rugby that the match was played in this manner with both teams playing attacking rugby. The whole day was a massive success for Dunbar as a club and thanks to David Ladd and Don McPherson from the SRU. A special thanks goes to Fiona Blair for the incredible work involved in the whole day and also to all those who assisted on the day.
The whole season has been one massive success story with the first fifteen bowl and league champions and the under 18s winning the Edinburgh Division 2 league.