After two postponements of this fixture the large crowd that assembled at Braidholm may have been forgiven for wondering if this eagerly anticipated match would fall foul to weather conditions yet again. However, a bright spring day reassured all that this time we would be able to watch the derby clash. It was a busy Saturday with the 1st, 2nd and Under 18s all playing at home. A very large attendance at a lively luncheon meant a busy clubhouse.

The club was saddened to learn of the passing of Jack Henderson formerly of the Police Service and a well Kent and much-loved supporter of Geeha. A gentleman, clearly held in the highest esteem by all who knew him.  He will not be forgotten.


Just before match time, as usual, the sunny conditions gave way to a cloudier format with an increase in the chill factor. The pitch was firm and in very good condition. Attendees will have noticed the blue lines added to the playing surface. These are the parameters of the American Football Pitch ready to welcome our friends from East Kilbride Pirates for their season. The width of the rugby pitch and the rather confining lines of the American football pitch provided an interesting contrast.


Both sides prepared in contrasting ways. The home side in an atmosphere of fierce concentration and commitment went through a rotational set of contact drills and whole game ploys whilst the visitors tended to work in distinct units before coming together for a run through of their team skills.


A huge guard of honour was provided by our super Junior Section as the players entered the field. All club members will wish the Junior section every success as they look forward to their weekend trip to London Irish.

The home side kicked off with Gregor Drummond (who’s tactical and place kicking was to trouble Accies all afternoon) sending a long inviting kick deep into Accies territory. The ball was carefully gathered by the visitors but were quickly engaged by the home side resulting in GHA winning the ball back with Dario Ewing launching the hard-working Adam Kerr into the heart of the Accies defence. Quick ball allowed Andrew Goudie to put in a searching diagonal kick into the visitors five metre area which the visitors managed to clear up to their ten metre line. From the lineout the home side unleashed Max MacFarlane who smashed his way through a startled Accies defence before Gregor Drummond took advantage of the hole that Max had created to go over to score in just the second minute of the match. The conversion narrowly missed, and the score was: GHA 5 GLASGOW ACCIES 0.

It had been a whirlwind start by the home side and the speed of engagement and accurate execution of the basics suggested that the GHA side was firing on all cylinders. Accies had clearly been caught cold by this instant onslaught but to their credit they were determined to settle and ask questions of their own about the depth of GHA confidence.


The visitors began to put some impressive ball movement into play forcing the home side on to the back foot and had to look to the efficacy of their tackling to prevent Accies building yardage in the GHA half. As we passed the tenth minute, the game was developing into a tit for tat scenario with both sides defending and attacking on the hoof within the ten metre areas with some excellent breaks only being blunted by superb GHA and Accies tackling. However, with some flat and accurate passing Accies used the speed and flight of the ball to wrong foot the home defence (with Adam Ryan the principal conductor of some lovely passing all afternoon) and allow Ross Cowan entry into the line inside the GHA half to break into a gap and run home to score under the posts to loud cheers from the delighted visiting support. The try was converted and the score after thirteen minutes was: GHA 5 GLASGOW ACCIES 7.

Clearly Accies had no intention of being second best on the day and indeed, this was a timely reminder to the home side of the skill and ability in the opposing ranks and that anything other than a concerted and consistent approach would prove costly.


From the restart the home side moved into the Accies half and began to utilise their highly effective ploy of taking the ball into contact, maintaining possession, and driving the opposition back before releasing a powerful GHA back division orchestrated by Messrs Baird and Goudie. The home side won a crucial ball in the loose and after setting up the take and drive, Andrew Goudie released Charlie Lonergan to break into the Accies twenty-two metre area. Messrs Lonergan and MacFarlane are a devastating combo in midfield who have the strength, guile and skill to cause mayhem in opposition ranks and today was to be no exception. Desperate defence by Accies resulted in a penalty award to the home side deep inside the Accie five metre area. The home side set up the maul and released the talented Adam Kerr to gleefully fly over to score to huge cheers from the Braidholm faithful. The try was converted and the score after sixteen minutes was GHA 12 GLASGOW ACCIES 7.

Accies responded immediately from the restart with the combined work of Messrs Scott, Smith and Ryan making inroads to the GHA half.


Accies were asking questions of the home defence and looking to exploit any gaps that began to appear in the home rearguard, but a promising move inside the GHA half came to naught when a through ball was overlong and went out. This was to happen to both sides on a number of occasions in the afternoon which tended to deflate players who had worked hard to put their side in a good attacking position.

As we moved into the second part of the half the match was still finely balanced with GHA working very hard to establish a dominant platform and Accies equally intent on not only blunting GHA aspirations, but mounting their own momentum. As we moved into the twenty fifth minute GHA began to move the ball with menace into the Accies half. A huge feature of the success of GHA was the line out accuracy obtained from Luis Barron and the jumping skills of Messrs Kerr and Kilpatrick. The back row of Ewing, McCutcheon and McEntegart were quick to mop up any long balls over the back and were superbly in tandem to engage the half backs of Accies. All of the above was making it difficult for Accies to find time and space on the ball and indeed was adding to the confidence in the GHA ranks.

Once again, the “terrible twins” Lonergan and MacFarlane burst through tackles to take GHA deep into the visitors half before play breaking down and a scrum being awarded to GHA inside the twenty-two metre area. From the scrum the imposing figure of Luke McCutcheon broke away and desperate defensive tackling allowed Luis Barron to break through with forward support and score. The try was converted and after twenty six minutes the score was: GHA 19 GLASGOW ACCIES 7.


The rest of the first half saw play move from end to end as both sets of players attempted to wrestle control and establish a pattern. In a period of some good rugby from both sides it was the defensive talents of both sides which prevented any further score before the interval. Throughout the match there was some excellent positional play from both defences, especially Accies which negated the attempts to gain yardage by the boot. Half time the score was: GHA 19 GLASGOW ACCIES 7.


It had been a spirited and well contested first half with both sides producing attacking rugby. GHA had managed to dominate the match for periods by their consistent and accurate whole-team approach, which tended to drive the visitors onto the back foot and present the initiative to the home side. However, Accies were showing plenty of skill and resolve to suggest that should GHA drop their level of engagement in the second half that they would find Accies taking advantage.

During the interval the Primary Four cohort of our Junior Section provided the crowd with a smashing rugby skills session.



The Accies opened the second half determined to take the game to GHA. However, a confident GHA won the ball and immediately counter-attacked and pushed Accies back into their half where they conceded a penalty in front of the posts. Gregor Drummond duly kicked the penalty and the score after forty-three minutes of the match was: GHA 22 GLASGOW ACCIES 7. This was a severe set back to the visitors and seemed to instill in the home side an even greater confidence that they were in control.


Play moved through both ten metre areas as both sides attempted to find yardage. Some great inter-passing between Messrs Kerr, McCutcheon and Fox with assists from Kilpatrick and Drummond drove Accies deep into their own half- who were finding the relentless pressure of GHA forward and back driving, set ups and release very difficult to stop. In desperation the visitors conceded another penalty and once again Gregor Drummond converted to make the score after fifty minutes: GHA 25 GLASGOW ACCIES 7.

There followed a spirited attempt by Accies to gain ground, but it was met by some uncompromising tackles in midfield from the home side which seemed to shake the confidence of the visitors and certainly pleased the vocal home support.


GHA were now playing with a fluidity and consistency which we have seen patches of all season. Jamie McEntegart was yellow carded for a high tackle, and this was an opportunity for the visitors to claw their way back into the match. The visitors, however, were continually stymied by the prowess of the GHA forwards ability to disrupt or win Accies lineout ball and the speed of engagement by the GHA back-line which prevented Accies building an attacking platform. As we reached the sixtieth minute Messrs MacFarlane and Lonergan once again combined with devastating effect to burst through the Accies defence only to be stopped by some herculean tackles deep inside the Accies five metre area. Accies were forced to concede a penalty and once again Mr Drummond converted to make the score: GHA 28 GLASGOW ACCIES 7.


Despite this scoreline Accies refused to capitulate and continued to try and find a way to halt the pressure coming from all areas of the GHA team. Again, Accies gave away a penalty and the home side kicked deep into Accies territory. From the lineout the home side took the ball in and drove through the Accies twenty-two metre area before releasing the ball to Rory MacFarlane who read the intentions of the visiting defence and used his pace to skillfully run round the Accies rearguard to go over and score to huge cheers from the home crowd. The try was converted, and the score after seventy minutes was: GHA 35 ACCIES 7.


The home side pressured Accies from the restart and as Dario Ewing chased the ball as play was stopped, he was adjudged to have kicked the ball away and was yellow carded. Accies had one more moment of joy when in the seventieth fourth minute from an attack inside the GHA twenty-two area Stewart Black won a tussle to find space and score under the posts. The try was converted and the final score was: GHA 35 GLASGOW ACCIES 14.


Thus, GHA finished second in the League, the top team in Glasgow and unbeaten in five consecutive matches. This was a very complete performance from the Braidholm side. Skill, commitment and power which we had seen for periods throughout the season have all combined to provide an impressive display. Coach Calum was very pleased with the performance and saw it as the culmination of all the hard work and improving performances since the Highland match in November.


I would like to thank the players and coaches of all our sides and the army of helpers and staff who make Braidholm a very special club throughout the year.








Photography: Colin & Joyce Robinson



    1. Yes as Colin mentioned an excellent report on a great win for GHA. I also echo Colin’s thoughts with regards to the fantastic and well written reports on this sessions games and all board members as well as I suspect all players and members thank you for this

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