Melrose kicked off their competitive season with an impressive win at Millbrae against last season’s Scottish BT Premiership Champions 44-31. This fixture is always the curtain raiser to the season with the Premiership Champions hosting the Scottish BT Cup Winners, and both were out to throw the ball about with 75 points scored. Melrose managed to run in seven tries in all, with two from Ross McCann, a Penalty Try and one each from Sam Pecqueur, Fraser Thomson, Richard Ferguson and Nick Beavon. The men from the Greenyards were 32-17 up at the break and managed to contain their opponents in the second half to hold out for the win. Always a big deal to win at Millbrae and the victory sets the top Borders club up for their opening match at home to Watsonians on Saturday.
In the BT Cup Round 1, Kelso knocked out Cartha Queens Park 35-20 away from home, a good result for them considering both teams were promoted into BT National 1 last season. St Boswells took the scalp of Newton Stewart 32-6 at Jenny Moore’s Road, with Peebles already through due to a bye into Round 2. Peebles opted to play their first Booker Border League match at home to Jedforest and scored five tries, but Jed managed six – all converted by Ewan Scott – to go to the top of the table in Pool B. Jedforest’s captain Paulo Ferreira scored a hat trick, with Blade Roff, Callum Young and Martin Chisholm all crossing for tries. For Peebles Hooker Ryan Stewart got two touchdowns, with Murray Brown and Scott Stoddart getting one each with a penalty try awarded after Ruaridh Clinch was hampered as he crossed the line for a try out wide. Although it should have been a Clinch try by rights, it will go down on the books as a penalty try, and this season all penalty tries are worth 7 points with no conversion under the posts needed. Watch action from the game here.
In the East Leagues there were wins for Hawick Harlequins in EL1 and Langholm and Gala YM in League 2.
Picture of Melrose with the trophy courtesy Scottish Rugby.