BOROUGHMUIR BEARS head coach Graham Shiel has stuck largely with the same pack as went toe-to-toe with Southern Knights for 60 minutes before running out of steam towards the end of last Sunday’s clash, with the only change to face Stirling County tomorrow [Sunday] afternoon being Dan Winning coming in at loose-head for the benched George Cave.
Behind the scrum, Ronan Kerr returns from injury to partner youngster Duncan Munn in the centre, meaning Jordan Edmunds reverts back to his preferred wing position, and Glen Faulds drops out. Rory Drummond is fit again and appears to be covering the outside-backs from the bench.
“There was much to be proud of last week versus Southern Knights and whilst incredibly disappointing to come away from Melrose with nothing to show for our efforts, there is a belief in the squad that it was a step forward and for much of the game we were equal to our opponents,” said Shiel. “Credit to all of the players for the way they dealt with the challenges during the week to deliver a very competent performance and the way in which they continue to focus with preparation to improve individually and collectively.
“Stirling had a well deserved win versus Ayrshire Bulls last week having been very close in all other games, so we will have to be accurate in all aspects of our game and be at our best as we search for success,” he added.
Opposite number Ben Cairns has also gone for continuity in selection after last weekend’s dramatic win over Ayrshire Bulls, with one enforced change in the backline seeing Craig Robertson starting at full-back and Tom Roche shifting to the wing in place of Logan Trotter.
Up front, JP Phelan moves from tight-head to loose-head, Reyner Kennedy rotates back in at hooker in place of Angus Fraser, and Lewis Skinner starts at tight-head. George Arnott starts at blindside, with Dean Menzies-Taylor shifting to No8 and Bradley Luney dropping to the bench.
“Last weekends victory was a little closer than we would have liked, but somehow we found a way to come back from that intercept,” said Cairns. “Whilst the scoreboard could have been more comfortable the boys played some terrific rugby, the challenge now is can we back it up away from home.
“I am sure, the Bears will see this as an opportunity to climb the table too. They were very unlucky versus the Knights last weekend. They played with real adventure and cored a couple of excellent tries in the first half through a couple of their danger-men.”
Boroughmuir Bears: M Cimprich; T Brown, R Kerr, D Munn, J Edmunds; T Pittman, K Barreto; R Dunbar, C McKenzie, D Winning (co-captain), J Fisher, W Inglis, C Keddie (co-captain), S McGinley, T Andrews.
Subs: F Scott, G Cave, M McGinley, E Ferrie, M Mncube, K McGhe, M Johnstone, R Drummond.
Stirling County: C Robertson; S Hamilton, A Russell, C Jardine, T Roche; A Goudie, G Hughes; J Phelan, R Kennedy, L Skinner, J Pow, B Bowes, G Arnott, C Gordon, D Taylor-Menzies.
Subs: A Fraser, B Dineen, G Breese, B Luney, A Mackie, C Korteweg, E Cunningham, L Hayes.