GHA RFC MATCH 252: GHA RFC 31 – 22 ARDROSSAN ACADEMICALS RFC
2012/2013: Scottish Championship A
ARDROSSAN ACADEMICALS RFC
|S. Lang||15||B. Hunter|
|R. Jericevich||14||D. McGregor|
|J. Brogan||13||P. Gossman|
|C. Binnie||12||T. Rodger|
|G. Adams||11||C. Wilson|
|D. Dunn||10||A. Wilson (c)|
|A. Gillman||9||M. Grant|
|S. Spowart||1||B. Hamilton|
|(c) D. Malcolm||2||K. Blair|
|S. Fisher||3||I. Frazer|
|R. Glen||4||M. McFarlane|
|J. Auld||5||S. Nimmo|
|D. Kellock||6||S. Lamont|
|P. Harkins||7||A. Flint|
|G. MacDonald||8||G. Telfer|
|C. Landsburgh||16||J. Young|
|S. Carson||17||A. Hogarth|
|M. Kidd||18||D. Kean|
|R. Jenkins||19||C. Allison|
|Adams, Binnie, Glen, Jericevich, Lang||Try||Grant (2), McFarlane|
|Brogan (3)||Con||A. Wilson (2)|
|Mr D. McClement|
The fourth game against Ardrossan this season, another win, another bonus point, and GHA continued their bid for promotion against Ardrossan on Saturday. GHA’s haul of bonuses in the RBS Championship has now extended to 14 from 12 games.
GHA’s cause was greatly helped with Falkirk’s unexpected home defeat by Dumfries. Only one point now separates Falkirk, the league leaders, and the Braidholm club in second place. But Cartha Queen’s Park remain a threat just seven points behind GHA, though with two games in hand.
Not content with just the bonus, GHA ran in five tries on a Braidholm pitch that had been doubtful two hours before kick-off after heavy rain in late morning. Robbie Glen opened the account after seven minutes, Chris Binnie and Rangi Jericevich also scored in the first half, Gordon Adams notched the bonus-point try just four minutes into the second half, and Scott Lang had the fifth. Victory was all the more satisfying after Andy Henderson’s early-morning call-off because of the expectation of an addition to his family.
It was GHAs third win against Ardrossan in little more than a month, adding to two successes in the West Region Cup competition. However, the Ayrshire club had won their first league match back in September. That has been the only league match this season from which GHA have taken nul point, and for much of Saturdays match Ardrossan showed signs of how that result had been achieved. Twice in the quarter of an hour after the interval they hauled GHAs lead back to just two points.
Indeed, the visitors scored first, Mathew Grant notching the try as the pack piled over. Allan Wilson missed the conversion, and when Glen went over from a forwards drive three minutes later John Brogan kicked the conversion for a lead that GHA retained through the contest. Binnie ran in from near the visitors 22-metre line, and GHA were 12 points up in 34 minutes when Grant Macdonalds scrummage pick-up sent Jericevich in at the right corner.
GHA, however, suffered three blows in the five minutes of added time. Michael McFarlane scored Ardrossans second try, Wilson converting to cut the home lead to 17-12 at the interval, and not only Paul Harkin sin-binned but from the same incident Dominic Kellock was carried off on a stretcher with a knee injury.
Barely a minute had been played in the second half when Wilson cut GHAs lead to two points with a penalty goal. But Gordie Adams soon scored in a hack and chase, and Brogan converted from out on the right.
Only 11 minutes into the second half the margin was again down to two points, this time with Grants second try and a Wilson conversion. Yet again GHAs riposte was quick, with Binnies crossfield kick creating enough uncertainty in the Ardrossan cover for Lang to chase the ball down the right touchline for a try that Brogan converted, again from well out.
In the remaining 25 minutes Ardrossan kept trying for a couple of bonuses, but GHA held out even though they lost Glen to the sin-bin late on.
GHA coach Gordon MacPherson was pleased with the teams performance. He said:
“I was very pleased with the performance considering we had some of our key players out including both Andy Henderson and Hefin O’Hare. It was quite a good test for us to see how we would cope without their influence. I think considering the conditions we coped quite well even though we didn’t take all our opportunities in the first half, we were still able to score some good tries. If we want to win the league it is important to keep picking up bonus points. So it was important for us considering the conditions to score the five tries which was a good effort. Also considering we weren’t at full strength and Ardrossan were, from that point of view it was very pleasing. It is extremely important for the confidence of the guys to keep winning. We have been stating that in the last few weeks. For our confidence we have to win every game. Every game is a key game most especially against teams around about us so it is really important that we keep up our run of form, keep our fitness levels up and for the guys to look after themselves over the Christmas period. We have a couple of tough games early January which is not ideal to have games at that time of the year. But it is important that we keep winning.”
In the aftermath, GHA received the bad news that Dominic Kellock had ruptured his medial cruciate ligament, an injury which is set to see the GHA back row miss the remainder of the season. On a more positive note however, Andy Henderson became a father for the third time with the birth of his daughter Erin Isla Henderson.
Source: Bill McMurtrie