Match Report v Hamilton 13/11/2010
The final game of the first half of the season pitted Whitecraigs against Hamilton, first v second and supporters of both sides were anticipating a high quality closely contested game. The away supporters were the ones that left Laigh Bent with a smile on their faces as Whitecraigs produced their best all round performance of the season to beat Hamilton 25 to 7 and also secured a bonus point.
On a perfect day for rugby and on a pitch that had recovered well from the mid week deluge, it was Hamilton that started the strongest with having all the possession and territory for the first 15 minutes. The Craigs defence held firm, as it has done all season, and thwarted all of the home side’s attacks. This was evident as for some of that period a yellow card was shown to a Craigs forward and the remaining 14 men battled hard to keep their line intact.
After 20 minutes after another Hamilton attack was stifled, Craigs stole the ball and then after a foot rush the length of the field, Steven Whittet outpaced the Hamilton defence to score. Ryan Moffat converted to take the score to 7-0 to the visitors. This score settled the Craigs players and they regained possession and started to play some continuity rugby. A penalty to Whitecraigs 20metres from the line was quickly taken by Stuart Pollock and Fraser Campbell went over to make the score 12-0.
Just before the break and Craigs pressing hard, a Hamilton player was yellow carded and from the resultant penalty, Ryan Moffat took the score to 15-0 to Whitecraigs at half time.
After the interval, Craigs started where they had left off, when Ross McDonald stole a lineout and Jamie Christine crashed over to give the away side a 20-0 lead. Hamilton hit back with a well worked try in the corner and then started to exert more pressure but Craigs held firm. This was a huge effort as for some of that time Craigs were down to 13 men as 2 players were yellow carded. However Whitecraigs were not finished and after they stole the ball Ben Blamire galloped in to make the final score 25-7 and secure the bonus point.
Coach, John Shaw, was absolutely delighted with the win and emphasised it was a team win with every player playing his part. The commitment in defence was outstanding and the ability to turn defence into attack was crucial. He added, that there was no room for complacency as there 11 more games to go and everyone will be gunning for the league leaders. We have to maintain our levels of commitment at training and on match days and every player has their part to play.
This leaves Whitecraigs top of Premier 3, 11 points in front of second placed Hamilton. Next up is Howe of Fife (a) on the 20th November with a 12 noon ko.
Team: W Corbett: S Whittet, P Nicol, S Magorian, G Fisher: R Moffat, S Henderson: I Laidlaw, J Christine, F Campbell, J Howarth, R McDonald, D Monaghan, S Pollock, N Blamire: Subs; A McMillan, B Blamire, F Hunter, C NIsbet