It’s third time unlucky as West lose out

West Rugby
West Rugby

Stewarts Melville FP RFC 31

West of Scotland FC 20

RBS Premier League 2

WEST suffered their third defeat in as many weeks after travelling east to face a team that has not lost a league game this season.

Stewarts Melville opened the scoring almost immediately with the first of many penalties but West responded brightly and good handling by the backs saw winger Andrew Symington score in the home corner.

The windy conditions meant the conversion was missed.

From the kick off Stewarts Melville gained another penalty which their stand-off Seb Trotter popped over to take them once more into the lead at 6-5.

A further penalty to Stewarts Melville 35m out shortly after was put to touch on the West 5m line. The visitors defended stoutly but the ball was put along the line for their full back Liam Steel to score in the corner. Again the conversion was missed and the lead was now 11–5.

With the home side repeatedly stealing the ball in the West rucks the Burnbrae side were unable to keep possession long enough to make an impact, although it was good interplay from the backs that saw the home side giving away a penalty on their 22m line which Ross McAulay slotted over to make the scoreline 11–8.

It was yet another penalty on the West 10m line that gave the home side another opportunity with the ball being put to touch on the visitors 5m line. A simple take and drive put their captain Scott Brewster over the line. With the conversion missed Stewarts Melville crept further in front 16–8.

The hosts were now gaining confidence and West went through a stage where nothing seemed to go right. The boot of Stewarts Melville’s Seb Trotter was constantly putting West on the back foot and the home side were rewarded just before half-time with a backs move which saw their winger Scott Riddell score in the corner to go into the break 21–8 ahead.

It was more of the same for Stewart Melville in the second half and they were rewarded with another drive over try from No8 Joni Hare to claiming the touch down. The conversion missed.

One foray into the home 22m ended up successfully with West’s prop Steven Longwell burrowing under a pile of bodies to touch down under the posts to give McAulay an easy conversion and take the score to 26–15. At this stage an upset was still possible but the home side put that possibility aside as they sliced through a number of tackles and scored again in the West corner. The conversion was missed.

The visitors were at least able to stop the home side running out of sight and indeed an interception by West’s centre Neil Heron and an 85m run was only stopped 5m out from the home line by a desperate tackle by the full back. McAulay was on hand however to pick up the ball and dive over for the try to bring the final score to 31–20.