GHK 26-13 West
30th September 2016
Local rivals GHK (Glasgow High Kelvinside) hosted West under the floodlights at Old Anniesland on Friday night. GHK had recently beaten high flying Aberdeenshire so seemed to be getting back to last year's form. West hoped for a repeat of a similar fixture against Hawks a few years ago when a team featuring Richie Gray came out on top in a thriller.
This time round, though, the conditions were a slow drizzle and handling was difficult for both teams.
GHK struck early before West had really woken up, winning a penalty which they took as a tap, flanker Calum Kerr squeezing it over the line. Danny Campbell converted and the hosts were 7-0 up.
West hit back when after a penalty kicked to touch, they set up a powerful driving maul, Colin McInally scoring off the base. The conversion was missed but things were closer at 7-5.
The match settled down somewhat, West looking better in the forwards, GHK's backs looking dangerous, and West took the lead when Blair Smith converted a penalty after an excellent run up the wing by West debutant Rob Greenhalgh.
There were more wars in trenches including a yellow card for West hooker Scott Carmichael until GHK ripped a turnover and passed elegantly out to winger Rory Taylor who scored on the overlap. Danny Campbell converted and the halftime whistle saw GHK lead 14-8.
The second half saw tit for tat moves from either side repelled by good defence. GHK missed a long range penalty before GHK centre Ruaridh Hamilton somewhat fortuitously collected a chip forward to find the try line. The conversion missed wide but GHK were now leading 19-8.
Another chip forward and lucky bounce saw GHK full back Danny Campbell pick up GHK's bonus point try, which he converted himself and GHK were now comfortable at 26-8.
A stooshie followed which saw a player from each side yellow carded, and West worked hard to get back in the game. Unfortunately the lineout wasn't working, which could have made all the difference, but West kept banging away. Eventually, Ross Sutherland succeeded painfully in getting over the line, but no conversion and West finished with nothing to show for a hard fought match, the final score 26-13 to GHK. A disappointing result, but there is improvement left in this West side.
West: 1. Neil Fullerton 2. Scott Carmichael 3. Andy Love 4. Colin McInally, 5. Mark Jenkinson (c) 6. Angus Thomson 7. Darren Allen 8. Fraser Smeaton 9. Alex Fisken 10. Ross McAulay 11. Ross Carnegie 12 Jack Urquhart 13. Blair Smith 14. Robert Greenhalgh 15 Pete Burns. Subs 16 Glen Sutherland 17. Stuart MacDonald 18. Tom Grey 19. Mark Sim.