HE was dead on his feet at the end and was under pressure throughout but Craig Davidson stuck it out for the full 80 minutes in his first start at this level as Watsonians defeated Stirling Wolves on Friday night, plus the South African born-and-raised loose-head prop, who played Scotland Under-20s this season, has ‘Harley’ as a middle name so deserves selection on that basis alone.
There was plenty of competition at hooker, with regular team-of-the-week contenders Gregor Hiddleston of Stirling Wolves, Grant Stewart of Ayrshire Bulls and Michael Liness of Heriot’s putting in big shifts, but Corey Tait of Boroughmuir Bears gets the nod on this occasions, while Euan McLaren of Heriot’s is the tight-head.
Second-row was also fiercely contested with Hamish Ferguson of Wolves, Rory Jackson of Ayrshire Bulls, Clark Skeldon of Southern Knights, Jack Fisher of Boroughmuir Bears and Luis Ball of Watsonians all unfortunate to miss out, but the galloping Charlie Jupp‘s contribution for Heriot’s in the battle of the touchlines and around the park (including a try and preventing Fisher from grounding the ball at the end) earns him selection alongside the equally industrious James Pow of Wolves in the engine-room.
In the back-row, Sam Derrick of Southern Knights gets the nod at blindside, another try in a typically busy all round performance from Iain Wilson of Heriot’s gets him the nod at openside, and Neil Irvine-Hess‘s man-of-the-match showing for Watsonians sees him preferred to Blair Macpherson at No 8 on this occasions.
The quick-witted and fleet-footed Cam Jones segued back from Edinburgh A duty to produce a man-of-the-match performance as Heriot’s got the better of Boroughmuir Bears at Meggetland so is selected ahead of Grant Baird of Bulls and Kyle McGhie of Wolves at scrum-half.
Meanwhile, stand-off is the always classy Frazier Climo, lest anyone down Ayrshire way doubts The Offside Line and its contributors’ admiration for the veteran New Zealander, with honourable mentions going to Callum Grieve who showed up well at 10 for Knights against before moving to full-back and Bruce Houston of Heriot’s.
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Grant Hughes of Heriot’s pushed hard for selection at inside-centre but misses out to opposite number Scott Robeson, who scored an excellent try in a solid all-round performance for Boroughmuir Bears. He partners George Pringle, who made one try, scored another and generally looked as though he could make thinks happen for Watsonians against Wolves.
On the wings, Watsonians pair Ross McKnight and Angus Guthrie took their interception tries well and ran hard all afternoon, while Mason Cullen and Aidan Cross showed up well for Boroughmuir Bears and Southern Knights respectively, but Bulls duo Jamie Shedden (started at outside-centre then moved to the left touchline) and Luca Bardelli edge this selection.
It could easily have been an all Bulls back-three with Elias Caven showing his pace for a fine individual try from full-back, but Glen Bryce of Wolves also claimed a good opportunist score and showed up well generally on Friday night at Bridgehaugh.
15. Glenn Bryce (Stirling Wolves)
14. Luca Bardelli (Ayrshire Bulls)
13. George Pringle (Watsonians)
12. Scott Robeson (Boroughmuir Bears)
11. Jamie Shedden (Ayrshire Bulls)
10. Frazier Climo (Ayrshire Bulls)
9. Cam Jones (Heriot’s)
1. Craig Davidson (Watsonians)
2. Corey Tait (Boroughmuir Bears)
3. Euan McLaren (Heriot’s)
4. Charlie Jupp (Heriot’s)
5. James Pow (Stirling Wolves)
6 Sam Derrick (Southern Knights)
7. Iain Wilson (Heriot’s)
8. Neil Irvine-Hess (Watsonians)