MATT VALLANCE @ Old Anniesland

HAWKS’ 14 tries to one dismantling of the once-feared Green Machine laid bare the vast gulf between the top and bottom of the BT Premiership. Hawks won deservedly, playing a brand of almost Warrior-like rugby. For Hawick, the spirit is still there, the locals still turn out: “for the toon”, but, the game has moved on past the days when you could pick a Scotland pack down Hawick High Street any Friday night.


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The mournful faces of skipper Bruce McNeill and the watching Stuart Hogg said it all at the end. There was simply nothing anyone from Hawick could say after this.

Not that victorious Hawks coach Fin Gillies was getting carried away. “I’ score that win as a good six out of ten any day”, he said.

Had the otherwise excellent George Horne been on-song off the tee- Hawks might have been pushing to break the 100 points barrier. He kicked just four conversions from the 14 tries his side scored. These were split six-eight between the first and second halves.

Kerr Gossman got the first two, before Neil Renwick cut Hawks’ lead with back-to-back penalties. But, before the break, Hawks had added four more tries, through skipper Tommy Spinks, Junior Bulumakau, Grant Stewart and Bobby Beattie – with Horne converting the first of these.

At times in the second half it was one-way traffic. Hawks would score, then immediately score again from the restart. Horne completed a hat-trick right at the death, Gossman took his tries tally to four, while Bulumakau also got a hat-trick, and replacement hooker Paul Cairncross got on the score-sheet.

Hawick managed one consolation try, from the indefatigable Bruce McNeill, converted by Neil Renwick.

Finally, Sean Lamont thoroughly enjoyed his run-out at full-back, but restricted himself to assisting in the try-scoring. “I’m no glory-seeker,” he joked.

Teams –

Glasgow Hawks: S Lamont; J Bulumakau, R Beattie, D Milne, K Gossman; J Henderson, G Horne; S Findlay, S Rodgers, G Strain; A Linton, A Kirkland; A Redmayne, G Stewart, T Spinks (c). Replacements: P Cairncross, B Cullinane, F Hastie, J Steele, B McGroarty.

Hawick: N Renwick; N McColm, G Johnstone, G Huggan, W Hamilton; L Armstrong, B Campbell; S Muir, C Mackintosh, T Skeet; M Robertson, D Harlen; R Gibson, S Graham, B McNeill (c). Replacements: M Landels, F Renwick, B Robertson, K Brunton, A Weir.

Referee: Sam Grove-White

Scorers –

Glasgow Hawks: Tries: Gossman 4, Horne 3, Bulumakau 3, Spinks, Stewart, Beattie, Cairncross; Cons: Horne 4.

Hawick: Try: McNeil; Cons: Renwick; Pens: Renwick 2.

Scoring sequence (Hawks first): 5-0; 10-0; 10-3; 10-6; 15-6; 17-6; 22-6; 27-6; 32-6 (h-t) 37-6; 42-6; 44-6; 49-6; 54-6; 54-11; 54-13; 59-13; 61-13; 66-13; 71-3; 76-13; 78-13.

Yellow Cards –

Hawick: Bruce McNeil

Man-of-the-Match: With four tries, Kerr Gossman deservedly took the plaudits

Talking Point: The normally-reliable George Horne converted just four of Hawks’ 14 tries. Had he shown his usual accuracy off the tee, how embarrassing would this have been for the totally out-gunned Greens.





About Matt Vallance 38 Articles
Matt is a former member of Cumnock Rugby Club's 'Mean Machine' - motto: "Well, we won the fight". He has written about some 60 sports in a long career, mainly spent freelancing for, amongst others: The Herald, The Scotsman, The Sunday Times, Scotland on Sunday, the late-lamented Sunday Standard and just about every national paper. He survived a spell at the Paisley Daily Express, covering St Mirren and the Paisley Pirates every week. He now writes a lot of sporting obituaries, since he saw many of his subjects play. Opinionated, passionate and, as one Bill McMurtire once said: "The only Cumnock member (other than Mark Bennett) who can be let out without an escort". In his 70th year, Matt, known to many as: 'Snuff', still has a few noses to get up. Unfulfilled ambition - to live long enough to see Scotland beat the All Blacks.