Dumfries Saints and Annan in final warm up game

Captains Ball

Another good run out for both teams sets them up for league and cup competitions this Saturday when Dumfries take on Cartha in the West Championship League and Annan take on Waysiders Drumpellier in the West Regional Shield.

The opening stages were even with Annan soaking up everything Dumfries threw at them, the visitors defended well and were more aggressive at the breakdown leading to a few early turnovers. Dumfries had the better of the set piece but with a pool of 26 Saints all getting some game time to let head coach Mickey Hunt and assistant coach Paddy Coupar have a good look at different combinations, continuity suffered and whatever XV were on the pitch they had to work hard against a very committed and focussed Annan pool of 19 players.

The scoring was opened at the start of the 2nd quarter after a great run by Kenny Henderson released last season’s top try scorer Andrew Wilson into the corner, the conversion was missed but Saints led 5 nil. The teams were evenly matched for long periods of the game until early in the second half Ross Henderson picked up at the base of a 5 metre scrum against the head and crashed over. Alan Birdsall converted taking the score to 12 nil.

A great run round his winger from Michael Yates drew the full back and delivered a superb inside pass for Jordan Kerr to score under the posts. Jack Johnstone converted 19 nil. As Annan tired Saints were starting to dominate. Alan Birdsall took a quick penalty drew in the defence before releasing captain Mark “Paddy” McClatchey for cracking score which he made the most of Ashton style under the posts. Alan Birdsall drop kicked the conversion to go 26 nil up.

A loose ball out the back of a ruck was pounced on by Andre Wilson who ran in a great individual try in the corner which Alan Birdsall nailed in the conversion. Final score Dumfries Saints 33  Annan 0.

All 26 players contributed to the win but there were some huge individual performances from the old guard Ali Mather, Kenny Henderson and Andrew Wilson. The young ones including captain “Paddy” McClatchey who led from the front also did well. They will all get a chance again this Saturday with both the 1st and 2nd XV’s travelling to Cartha Queens Park for league action.

Andrew on way to a score