Caledonia Cup first round
Solid display takes U15 squad through to the next round
With overnight snows putting the game in doubt it was a great relief when one o`clock came with blue skies and a green pitch. Perthshire started the game brightly and their pack quickly demonstrated they would not be pushed around. The opening encounters were very forward dominated, not surprising given a very heavy pitch. Highland slowly began to get control and the back line started to fire punching through the visitors defence. Sustained pressure in the 22 saw Perthshire infringe and quick thinking from Fionnlagh Call saw him take the penalty and dart over between the posts for the first score .Seamus Ross added the extra 2 points to establish an early lead.
Highland continued to dominate possession but the slippery conditions and some poor decision making, not to mention some impressive Perthshire defence ensure they did not capitalise on it to the extent they should have. It took a great individual try from Harrison Wright to get the scoreboard moving again. A good pass from Seamus put him into space but it still required some strong running breaking two tackles to cross the line, again under the posts. Seamus again knocked the ball over to take the score to 14-0.
Perthshire were further disadvantaged when their full back that had picked up a knock early on and had been limping heavily eventually had to concede his game was over and reduced the visitors, who had no subs, to 14 men. More good pressure saw the ball coughed up by Perthshire and a fly hack forward gave Jamie Rodgers the chance to chase it over the line and touch down in the corner. The angle gave Seamus a tough kick which he just missed out on and the first half finished 19-0.
Despite being a man down the visitors continued to defend resolutely and offered very few clear cut chances. Highland did however have the upper hand and the forwards in particular put together some excellent phases of play showing sensible ball retention in the conditions. A solid scrum midway through the half gave Bruce Flockhart the chance to pick up from number 8 and with his usual direct approach break the line to once again touch down under the posts. Seams made no mistake with kick to stretch the score to 26-0.
Despite considerable pressure Highland failed to add to the score although John Falconer will feel hard done by when in the last move of the game he was adjudged not to have grounded the ball after breaking over the line from all of one yard.
Lots of positives from the game, and as always lots to work on as well. Huge thanks to our visitors for making the journey despite the less than ideal travelling conditions, and for providing such good opposition. As ever thanks to all the parents and supporters for helping with entertaining our guests.