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Moray Rugby Club


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MORAY 2NDS 36 HIGHLAND 3RDS 14  by Brian Foreman
Tue 23rd Nov 2021
A strong start to the current league campaign by the 1st team has seen numbers at training soar. So, it was welcome news when Moray were able to announce a 2nd team fixture for the first time this season, with Highland 3rds the visitors.

Things didn’t start too well, when with just four minutes played Moray were caught out by a high ball, that was allowed to bounce just inside their half. The Highland full-back pounced and grubbered through twice before diving on the ball, to touch down near the posts. The simple conversion made it 0-7

Moray came back just three minutes later however, when Andrew McBean broke left from the base of a scrum in the visitors twenty-two and powered all the way to the line to score in the corner. The kick was missed. 5-7

Moray struck again just after the quarter hour. Steven Clark secured lineout ball on the halfway and drove at the defence. From here the ball was shipped through a number of hands before Ewan Simpson dove in at the left corner for a well worked score. Kick missed. 10-7

The next twenty minutes were even but with half time approaching it was Highland who got their noses in front again. Their defence held firm when Moray took a quick tap penalty 10m out after a high tackle. The ball was held up over the line and the resultant drop out got them to the halfway line. From there they secured the lineout and after a number of drives through the home defence, they were in under the posts for another converted try. 10-14

Moray didn’t rest and came back immediately with a long range effort of their own. From a scrum just inside the visitors half, they once again broke left. After a number of phases and good interplay they were stopped just short but centre Calum Smith wouldn’t be denied and crashed over for the score. Kick missed. Half-time 15 – 14

The second half took a little bit longer to come to life, with both sides looking for an opening. It was Moray who would eventually exert some sustained pressure and take control for good.

Although spurning a good chance on 57mins; when losing their own scrum on the visitors line, they would make amends shortly thereafter. Highland’s backs were caught offside from a clearance kick on their own 22m line. Moray took a quick tap penalty and Jake Devlin fought through several tacklers close to the line and took it in for their first converted try. 22 – 14

Seven minutes later, clever work by Callum Watson at the base of the opposition scrum lead to another seven points. His steal set up Ross Joy who rumbled his way to the line from distance, leaving despairing tacklers in his wake and another converted score. 29 - 14

Highland were reeling now and the contest was effectively over from the ensuing restart. Cameron Morrison Smith collected the kick and drove straight into the defence for 20m before offloading. The ball was moved through several phases and finally shipped wide for Ewan Simpson to be sent clear on the right before dotting down near the posts for his second of the day. The conversation made it a final score of 36-14.

This was a thoroughly enjoyable game, played hard, fair and with good spirit by both sides. For a Moray team playing together for the first time, with a number of individuals not having played in some time or much at all before, they acquitted themselves well.

The forwards fronted up after early pressure and took control the longer the game went on. The backs were sound defensively and had the same willingness to attack that the 1sts have showcased this year. Strength In depth bodes well for the club and creates competition for places. This can only be a good thing.

Hopefully there will be more games to come for them to build on this and develop.

(More of James Officer's images from this match can be found in the Gallery

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Caledonia 2 North

(2021/22 Results)
Aberdeenshire 12 46
Highland 2nd XV 11 46
Moray 12 40
Ross Sutherland 10 22
Banff 12 19
Mackie 10 10
Aberdeen Grammar 2nd XV 9 1

Last 1st XV Game

1st XV Season (2021/22)
Banff 33 - 39 Moray
5th Mar 22 - KO: 15:00
Venue: Duff House

Next 1st XV Game

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Moray Rugby Football Club is a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation (SCIO) regulated by the Scottish Charity Regulator (OSCR), Scottish Charity number: SC051430