Walkerburn 7

Queensferry 41

Colin McCudden

at Caberston Haugh

ON Saturday Walkerburn hosted Queensferry in the BT East Region Bowl, knowing they needed to win by 35 points to secure a place in the national semi-final.

This was a daunting task but they approached the game confident of gaining some form of victory based on their home form and their improvement since the sides last met earlier in the season.

Caberston Haugh had seen snow last weekend, followed by flooding as late as Wednesday and just when it seemed the extreme weather had abated Saturday saw a freakishly strong wind blowing down the valley.

In the first half Burn played into this wind that was so strong Sandy Walker struggled to get the ball 10 yards at kick-offs. Queensferry's big XV wasted no time in taking advantage of the wind and putting the Burn under pressure immediately.

Their large forwards put the hammer down pounding the Burn defence, and when the ball was spread wide their big backs did the same.

An early try was scored after close driving by their prop and this was followed by a similar score to their large inside centre who contributed much throughout the match.

Despite having to put a lot of energy into chasing the ball Burn stuck to their task making tackles and forcing Queensferry to work hard for their scores.

All were heroes in defence, Sam Matthews making a nuisance of himself while captain Lee Robertson and Simon Currie enjoyed the physical challenge.

Number eight Jack McDonald turned over ball he didn't have a right to be near.

A further two tries for Queensferry including one that would have troubled the TMO made the half-time score 24-0 to the visitors.

Burn needed to start the second half well, and this they did with the conditions now in their favour. The first 20 minutes saw the Burn play rugby in the Queensferry half.

Pressure mounted from a series of close range scrums and eventually full back Keith Taylor managed to force himself over from a ruck on the line. This was converted impressively by Walker and the Burn were showing great spirit to get back in the game. However, Queensferry upped their game and asserted their dominance again playing effectively in the conditions, while the Burn struggled to get their wide game going in the wind.

Queensferry scored three tries to round out the match.

This was a day where Burn had to admit they were beaten by the better team on the day, but there was no shame in this performance. Good luck to Queensferry in the next round.

This Saturday Walkerburn hosts the annual Old Crocks game with current players and the legends of yesteryear playing - kick off 12 noon, followed by Scotland v Wales in the clubhouse.

All are welcome to come and enjoy a celebration of Burn rugby.