Cumbernauld open rugby season with win over Strathendrick

Action from Cumbernauld's win over Strathendrick
Action from Cumbernauld's win over Strathendrick

For the third season running, Cumbernauld were matched against their Fintry rivals Strathendrick for the opening match in their BT West Division 2 campaign.

And as in previous years the result favoured the home team as they ran out 27-12 winners.

There were some concerns in the Cumbernauld camp about player availability as numbers attending training had been less than noteworthy.

However the home team had a full complement for Saturday’s match at Auchenkilns and ran out worthy winners at the end of a tousy, competitive game, refereed by guest referee Rod Glass from Edinburgh.

The home team started brightly with the scrum, in particular, looking strong and physical.

Cumbernauld quickly took the lead in 18 minutes when, following a good lineout, Captain Jordan Reid carried for valuable yards, ably supported by Alan Durson and Ian Hepburn.

The Fintry outfit were penalised for handling on the ground and the resultant penalty was coolly slotted by Andrew Reid, playing at full-back.

The home team were now in full flow and a try quickly followed when, following a good break by Chris Anderson, Andrew Reid joined the line to feed his brother, Jordan, for a touchdown in the corner. Fullback Andrew harvested another two points with the successful conversion.

At this point the Badgers were playing well, particularly in the set piece, but with the old, familiar failing at the breakdown where on a number of occasions referee Glass awarded the scrum to Strathendrick because of Cumbernauld’s failure to observe the “use it or lose it” rule.

This extra possession seemed to inspire Strathendrick who scored following a break-out by their outstanding centre, feeding his winger to score in the corner.

This try was unconverted and Cumbernauld were unlucky not to touch down in the corner following a barnstorming run by number 8 Ross Cowie.

However Strathendrick transgressed in the ruck, and were subsequently pinged by referee Glass, allowing Andrew Reid a penalty kick from wide out which narrowly missed its mark making the half-time score 10-5 in Cumbernauld’s favour.

Early in the second half Cumbernauld were presented with another penalty opportunity when, following a great breakout from Andrew Reid and an excellent pick up from Ian Hepburn, and carry by Gavin Calder, the visitors were duly penalised.

But the opportunity to put more points on the board was sadly missed, although it has to be said that the windy conditions were a mitigating factor.

Strathendrick then scored a try following an episode of incessant forward pressure from the visitors and poor tackling by the home outfit.

The Auchenkilns outfit’s margin of superiority was thereby reduced to one point, following the successful conversion of the Strathendrick try and this was a little too close for comfort.

However normal order was soon restored when Hepburn scored after a great strike against the head by hooker Andrew Logan.

Andrew Reid, now operating at stand-off following the departure of Alex Stokes with a hamstring injury, coolly converted from a wide angle.

Another try quickly followed from Martin Caldwell who scored beside the posts following a great lineout take from Ross Cowie beautifully fed out to the line by Andrew Reid to Coddie, the rampaging full-back.