ONLY two games have survived the frost as it stands, with bottom of the table Garioch moving their clash with sixth placed Cartha to the Dyce 4G pitch in a bid to make sure it gets played, while there could also be drama on a 4G surface at Peffermill in Edinburgh where ‘home’ side Hillhead Jordanhill take on Heriot’s Blues take on with a morale-boosting third place finish in this year’s Premiership up for grabs.
How it stands –
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The Lowdown –
Garioch v Cartha Queens Park
Venue: Dyce 4G @ 1pm
Garioch: L Davis; C Burrows, S Pepper, L Davis, L Milne; N Chalk, A Rose Love; J Shaw, N Simpson, K Jamieson, J Silcocks, H Small, S Burnett, S Ross©, M Hyland. Subs: K Eades, B Jack, M Stewart, A Perry, L Keay, T Fowlie, I Jack.
Cartha Queens Park: C Hall©; L Webb, M Gribben, C Boan, G Steele; E Sutherland, S Jessiman; R Cobban, S Djoh©, K Gray, A McIntosh, R Campbell-Doughty, G Stewart, E Gilmour, R Mathieson. Subs: J Wilson, K Lawtie, A Murray, S Leeke.
Key battle: Nikki Simpson versus Samantha Djoh
Team news –
Garioch: Scotland wider squad member Nikki Simpson moves from No 8 to hooker with young talent Megan Hyland into the back-row. Kimberly Jamieson, Jess Silcocks, Amber Rose Love, Charlotte Burrows and Lesley Davies have come into the starting XV.
Cartha Queens Park: A number of players are back after the Corstorphine game was conceded. Co-captains Samantha Djoh and Carys Hall will look to lead from the front.
What the coaches say –
“We are really looking forward to the game this weekend. It is a big two weeks for us. Apart from Lindsey McDiarmid, who is in Dubai, we have had good numbers to pick from. We are hopeful that the game will go ahead and really want it to. The second half against Stirling was good so we are looking build on that momentum …” – Dave Duguid (Garioch)
“The team is looking forward to the last match of the league season with Garioch. The last encounter between the teams was close with Cartha Queens Park taking the win and we’re looking to repeat that this weekend and end the league on a positive note before the Cup run next year …” – Ally Hunter (Cartha Queens Park)
Verdict: Despite not winning a game so far this season Garioch will be up for this one at home and will throw everything at it. Cartha had to concede a game last week and are safe in the league, so they do not have much to play for except pride. The Glasgow outfit have a lot of pride though so this will be a tight affair.
Hillhead Jordanhill v Heriot’s Blues
Venue: Peffermill 4G @ 11am
Hillhead Jordanhill: R Fraser; B Tobin, H McHugh, M Warren, S Smolina; C McDonald, H Dunnett; S Marra, F Campbell, D Lee, C McGowan, E Thomson, E Henderson, H Telling©, K Yeomans. Subs: R Miller, P Abernethy, H Lockhart, R Davidson, M Wales, R Darroch, B Carberry.
Heriot’s Blues: B Cameron; A Evans, P Kellie, E Flavell, D Stamp; A Sergeant©, C Sedgeworth; E Collins, M Capaldi, A Wilson, C Syme, A Murray, M Taylor, A Savage, V De Puig Canosa. Subs: M Dadie, R Healy, C Harrison, R Sodden, J Courtney, H Riddoch, L Vilajoana Ricon.
Key battle: Carla McDonald versus Annabel Sergeant
Team news –
Hillhead Jordanhill: Frances Campbell, Eve Thomson and Ellie Henderson join the starting pack.
Heriot’s Blues: Scotland cap Annabel Sergeant is back to captain from 10 with Bethan Cameron, Amelia Evans and Caitlin Sedgeworth also joining the backline. Up front, Ailsa Murray comes into the second-row with Violeta De Puig Canosa at No 8.
What the Heriot’s Blues coach says –
“This weekend is an opportunity for the team to attain its highest ever position in the league. With that in mind, we are acutely aware that our opposition have everything to play for as well. After an uncharacteristic blip last weekend we are looking to make amends and have prepared well for what will no doubt be an enthralling encounter …” – Craig Robertson (Heriot’s Blues)
Verdict: This will be a real tussle between what is likely to be two evenly matched teams. Heriot’s are currently in third spot, but Hills want it and will have been bruised by the 38-12 defeat at Goldenacre early last month. Heriot’s will have been hurt by their big defeat by Watsonians last week, albeit with 14 players. Tough to call…
Home win – well a home win away from home for Hills.