Gordonians Win Scrappy Home Encounter
By Ryan Morrice
Gordonian RFC 63 v Orkney RFC 13
For the first time this season Gordonian RFC graced Donnie’s opulent garden taking on Orkney RFC in the early kick-off at Countesswells.
With an ever growing injury list, the re-shuffled Gordonians side took to the pitch in preparation for a tough encounter. Thankfully the forecasted rain never materialised, with the sun shining the match got under way. Following last week’s rampaging start against Perthshire RFC, Gordonian RFC started throwing about the ball from the off. In stark contrast to last week the play was far too loose and the errors quickly mounted. Rather than set targets the ball was getting popped out of the tackle, from one such loose pop the islanders got a boot to the ball, picking it up in the subsequent scramble and went the length of the pitch. As the Orkney player was diving for the line Graeme Crawford came across to put in the tackle dislodging the ball. Sadly, the referee decided this was a high tackle resulting in a penalty try and a yellow card for Crawford after only 5 minutes.
Playing into a strong wind, the Gordonian forwards went rumbling up the pitch resulting in a try for Jamie Christine. People were saying Gordonians would miss the boot of Sean Mills but Ross Knight and Graeme Crawford dismissed this notion. Playing stand-off for the first time in years Ross stepped up and slotted the conversion with ease. Not letting up the home side scored the best try of the match with the ball travelling through several sets of hands to Stewart MacMillian who set of on one of his first rampaging runs of the day. The Orkney defence scrambled and got to the flying winger but not before he popped a neat offload to Ross Knight to score in the corner. With Crawford still in the bin, Knight slotted the conversion from the touchline.
There were more injury woes for Gordonians as ‘jack of all trades’ Chris Simpson went off with a shoulder injury and his replacement, Logan Neave, took a knock 15 minutes in his return to the fray after a few injury plagued seasons.
Still trying to force the game led to more Gordonian mistakes and the penalty count against the home team started to rise. Crawford thought it would be funny to push his luck with the referee and try another high tackle, the crowd held its breath but it was just a final warning instead of the expected red card. Two Orkney penalties brought them right back in to the match. To calm the home side nerves Jim Sugdan’s favourite player ever, and we do mean ever, got in on the scoring act. Daniel Osugo crossed the whitewash a few minutes from half time and Crawford slotted another conversion.
After a few stern words were delivered at half-time the players took to the field to right the wrongs. With the wind at their backs, the home side surged up the field and Stuart Hackett scored with less than a minute played, Crawford slotted another conversion. The home side started to get on top in the match keeping the visitors penned in their own half but were failing to execute the final pass, hit the line out or pick the right option.
With 20 minutes to go, the tiring visitor’s resistance finally gave way. Mickael Guardia, capping of a fine display in his home debut, scored with another Crawford conversion. From there it was one way traffic, Graeme Crawford (2), Tom Williams and Danny Osugo all crossed the line to score. Graeme Crawford converted all four tries.
Full Time 63-13
Credit to Orkney RFC for making the trip down with a depleted squad. The attitude and commitment these guys show every other week in travelling to the main land is outstanding and are a credit to their club.
The Aberdeen Standard Investments man of the match was No.3 Jamie Christine.
This weekend sees the 1st XV travel to Haddington RFC with a 3pm KO.