Super Series Round Four Friday Preview: Ayrshire Bulls v Heriot’s

Re-match of the last Sprint Final is on the cards at Millbrae

Ayrshire Bulls second-row Rory Jackson reaches for the try line against Heriot's during the Super Series Sprint Final at Millbrae in May. Image: George McMillan
Ayrshire Bulls second-row Rory Jackson reaches for the try line against Heriot's during the Super Series Sprint Final at Millbrae in May. Image: George McMillan

A REPLAY of the recent Super Series Sprint Final is on the cards tomorrow night when Ayrshire Bulls host Heriot’s at Millbrae (7.35pm).

The two sides are tied for second place in the Championship table on 10 points each, although Heriot’s will be the happier of the two after winning both matches played with a bonus=point as well as sitting through one of their bye weekends, while the Bulls slipped up at home to pace-setters Watsonians before securing back-to-back away wins over Stirling Wolves and Southern Knights.

“We’ve made several changes this week,” said Bulls head coach Pat MacArthur. “Brad Rodrick-Evans and Ed Bloodworth return from injury which means Amino Bogidrau and Tim Brown move to the bench. Chris Elliot starts in place of Andy Stirrat (injured) and Christian Townsend, just back from playing in Australia, comes onto the bench. Craig Miller and Reiss Cullen also swap places with William Farquhar and Fergus Johnston as we rotate the squad.

“Heriot’s are a well-balanced side, posing threats both at set piece and out wide,” added MacArthur. “It will be a physical and bruising encounter if the last two fixtures are anything to go by. The Bulls are eager to put in a good showing in front of the Millbrae crowd after being on the road the last few weeks.”


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Meanwhile, Heriot’s head coach Ben Cairns has named an unchanged backline to the one he sent out against Stirling Wolves last week, while there are three enforced changes in the back with hooker Cammy Fenton, No 8 Ruairidh Leishman and blindside flanker Charlie Jupp all ruled out through injury. Michael Liness, Callum Anderson and Ben Smith take their places. Duncan Hood is set for his first appearance of the season off the bench.

“Last week’s match was a real nail biter and one we probably could have, should have lost,” said Cairns. “There was a bit of rustiness having returned from an early bye week but it was really pleasing to see the guys dig in at the end to get the win. That last defensive effort is something we will need to replicate for large portions of Friday night’s match if we are to get the desired result.

“The Bulls are growing into the competition having looked stronger every week and I am sure will be looking forward to getting back to Millbrae after back to back away matches. We had a couple of terrific contests at Millbrae in the Sprint Series and we are expecting more of the same on Friday night.”

 

Ayrshire Bulls (versus Heriot’s at Millbrae on Friday @ 7.35pm): C Hyde; T Glendinning, C Elliot, R Beattie, L Bardelli; B Rodrick-Evans, R Cullen; A Nimmo, G Stewart, C Miller, E Bloodworth, R Jackson, R Sweeney, L McNamara, B Macpherson©. Substitutes: A McGuire, R  Tanner, W Farquhar, T Brown, O Baird, F Johnston, C Townsend, A Bogidrau..

Heriot’s: R Jones; G Barber, M Davidson, G Hughes, L Wells; B Houston, S Broad; C Keen, M Liness, E McLaren, R Seydak, J Campell, B Smith, I Wilson©, C Anderson. Substitutes: C Ramsay, J Scott, S Cessford, W Nelson, D Hood, E McAra, L Richman, B Evans.

Referee: Jonny Perriam

Key battle: Ed Bloodworth versus Jamie Campbell

Verdict: If recent clashes between this pair are anything to go by, this is going to be a ferocious contest between two evenly matched teams. Home advantage is a big thing for the Bulls but Millbrae won’t have the same trepidation factor for Heriot’s after drawing there during the regular season and then coming up just short in the final of the pre-summer Sprint Series.

It may well come down to the bounce of a ball, a refereeing decision or one momentary lapse from a player, with Heriot’s narrow favourites to win by the shortest of noses.

Away win.


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About David Barnes 4026 Articles
David has worked as a freelance rugby journalist since 2004 covering every level of the game in Scotland for publications including The Herald/Sunday Herald, The Sunday Times, The Telegraph, The Scotsman/Scotland on Sunday/Evening News, The Daily Record, The Daily Mail/Mail on Sunday and The Sun.

1 Comment

  1. Still no interest in Super 6 malarkey
    That’s 8 articles now .
    Surely there must be something interesting to comment about .

    There’s been more interest in article about the Gala 7s .
    At least something to talk about

    7
    8

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