Clydebank 2 XV 12 GHA Gazelles 43

A fiercely fought draw against Dalziel two weeks ago looked like ideal preparation for this key league fixture at Clydebank, and indeed the early possession and territory was all Gazelles. Against the run of play, however, the home team scored a breakaway try.

The visitors struck back quickly, forwards and backs combining to send Armstrong in at the corner. The Gazelles’ second score followed in short order as Pickens finished off a drive by Booth from Carpenter’s line out take.

Clydebank responded, their scrum half sending the right winger off on a weaving run which beat the GHA defence. The game was finely balanced at this point, and had the makings of a similar encounter to the aforementioned gritty precursor.

But as half-time approached, the Gazelles once again gained the ascendancy, this time Graeme Scott barreling over. Brian Tracey’s two conversions saw the score at 19-12 to the Braidholm men at the turnaround.

And from the re-start, it was the visitors who found the extra gears. Scott chased and caught the GHA kick-off, and the resulting thrust took Scott Pickens over the line, allowing Tracey to add the extra points.

This was the signal for the big ball carriers to cut loose, and with Andy Freeth to the fore, Clydebank began to wilt. Paul Armstrong’s second try came from neat work by Shields, releasing the winger to scurry in at the corner flag.

With the score now at 31 -12, and the game secure, the GHA side could have been forgiven for easing up to the whistle, but quite the reverse occurred.

Twice in succession, the Clydebank defence was stretched first one way, then the other, and on each occasion, arch-opportunist Carpenter was on hand to evade the despairing cover. A last conversion from Tracey took the final score to 43 – 12, a very fair reflection of a game where the home side competed for 80 minutes, but ultimately could not match the more powerful Gazelles.

GHA Gazelles

15 G. MacGregor ( A. McIlroy 70 mins )

14 I. MacGillivray ( G. McLachlan 70 mins )

13 D. Shields

12 G. Summers

11 P. Armstrong

10 B.Tracey

9 G. Innes

1 G. Scott ( J. Harkness 70 mins )

2 J. Clarke ( D. Wallace 60 mins )

3 Z. McIlwham

4 G. Carpenter ( A.Brown 70 mins )

5 I. Grierson ( D. Marshall 65 mins )

6 M Booth ( A. Cairns 50 mins )

7 S. Pickens

8 A. Freeth

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