Thursday 15 March 2018

Match Preview NL1 13: Jed-Forest v Accies (rescheduled)

Saturday 17 March 2018
1st XV v Jed-Forest, Riverside Park, 15:00

It has been four weeks since our last league fixture and no doubt everyone, players and supporters alike, will be glad to get back to some rugby.

We have a fair contingent of supporters heading across Soutra to watch what is, in essence, the league decider. The points are such that only Jed, just five points behind us, can challenge us for the top spot. They will be as keen as us to avoid the second spot and face a play-off against Boroughmuir, Hawick or Hawks and Riverside Park is never an easy place to win and Jed have been unassailable there this season, their only loss coming at Raeburn Place back in September. Let's just hope the weather does not interfere yet again and push the fixture back to the end of April.

Coach's comments

"The benefit of the imposed break due to inclement weather is that we have some real headaches about who to select because almost everyone is fit and healthy.

"Angus Inwood gets the green light in the second row ahead of Robert Lovett, thanks to his energetic and physical performances through the January and February period. The back row takes on a new dynamic with the unfamiliar but exciting combination of Robin Snape, Jamie Sole and Lawrie Seydak. Max Love continues to impress and starts ahead of the experienced Sam Johnson, with Robbie Chalmers slotting into 15 for Luther Hirini, who will miss this week due to a concussion sustained at Tuesday training. This makes room for Callum Ramm to return to the back three on the wing.

"Riverside has not been a happy hunting ground for us in recent years, with Jed taking the spoils on both occasions we have played down there since we joined the ranks of National One. However, we feel we have learned from those experiences and understand what it takes to put ourselves in a position to win. We know what to expect and have prepared to the best of our abilities to manage and absorb that pressure, but it has only formed a small part of our preparations. Our focus is on us, and us alone, to get our little things right without getting caught up in the implications of a result either way.

"The beauty of having Jed on our tails is that it gives us the week-to-week short-term focus that allows us continually to improve and adapt. We look forward to taking some real learnings into the final phase of the season from what will be a competitive battle on Saturday."

Our senior squad for this week:

2nd XV v Melrose

This rescheduled fixture has been cancelled as Melrose cannot raise a team. This means we are awarded a 28-0 win and five league points. Depending on other results, this may just be enough to keep us in our current league. Fingers crossed!

Scotland Representation

It is another busy weekend for the various Scotland teams, with Accies featuring in three games:

  • Scotland U 18 v England - Rory Jackson.
  • Scotland U20 v Italy - Shaun Gunn & Finlay Richardson, making it a clean sweep for our two props who will have started for all of the U20s 6 Nations' games.
  • Scotland v Italy - Greig Laidlaw, Hamish Watson, Dave Denton and Blair Kinghorn are all in the squad again.

Good luck to them and their team mates - once an Accies, always an Accie.

Onwards & upwards!


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