GHA DENIED MAJOR CUP UPSET

GHA RFC MATCH 168: GHA RFC 29 – 34 BOROUGHMUIR RUGBY 

2008/2009: Scottish Cup 6th Round

GHA RFC 

 BOROUGHMUIR RUGBY

G. Taylor 15 S. Ruddick
R. Jericevich 14 E. Mills
N. Cassie (c) 13 M. Clapperton
R. McClymont 12 A. Kororua
P. Hilley 11 K. Eseonu
J. Noonan 10 M. Cannon
A. Gillman 9 C. Cusiter
G. Warnock 1 C. Costigan
J. Coffey 2 B. Ross
A. Kelly 3 F. Lait
A. Williamson 4 G. Scott
I. Smith 5 F. Pringle
P. Harkins 6 O. Brown
J. Pinder 7 A. Martyn
D. Chaney 8 B. Fisher
A. McCormick 16 R. MacKenzie
R. Jenkins 17 N. Patrick
A. Boag 18 J. Hare
B. Wamberg 19 M. Hare
Gillman, McClymont Try Clapperton, Fisher, Kororua, Lait, Martyn, Mills
Noonan (2) Con Cannon (2)
Noonan (5) Pen
DG
Referee
Mr G. Knox (Greenock Wanderers)

 

GHA were little more than five minutes from an upset against Boroughmuir at Braidholm. They were leading 29-22, and a place was beckoning in the Scottish Hydro Electric Cup quarter-finals. But two late tries by Boroughmuir shattered the GHA dreams.

The home team could well have been more than those sevens points ahead going into the finale. Their forwards were battering the visitors goal-line, and the referee had signalled what appeared to be a penalty advantage. But when the point of attack was switched into the backs the referee incredibly called the advantage over after only two passes. A few minutes later he allowed much longer advantage from a GHA infringement. Another penalty for GHA then could have taken them 10 points ahead. The way Jim Noonan was kicking he could not miss. Already he had slotted seven goals in as many attempts’ five penalties and two conversions for a tally of 19 points. Instead, Boroughmuir broke downfield, and Apenai Kororua raced away to score between the posts. Matt Cannon converted to level the scores, and extra time was looming when Malcolm Clapperton escaped to score the winning try in the right corner.

At half-time it did not seem that the contest would end as close. By then Boroughmuir had scored four tries and led 22-9. It would have been an even wider margin if the visitors had had a reliable goal-kicker. Cannon had only two successes from eight kicks. Conversely, Noonan kept GHA in the contest with three first-half penalty goals. The first opened the scoring in seven minutes, which was reward for GHA’s early pressure, with Dameon Channey, Jamie Pinder, and Andy Williamson eager to make statements of intent. Noonan’s second goal restored the lead at 6-5, and the third held the margin to 9-10 after half an hour. Yellow cards, too, punctuated the first half. Pinder was first to the sin-bin, though that was one of the occasions when Cannon failed to capitalise. Then Clapperton was shown a yellow, and later Channey and Olly Brown went off together.

Almost throughout the match the scrums were uncontested because after only 11 minutes Boroughmuir had lost their starting hooker and his replacement. That seemed not to affect Boroughmuir as it was from the first of those static scrums that Freddie Lait scored their first try. Angus Martyn had the second in 26 minutes, and Ed Mills and Ben Fisher scored in quick succession as the first half drew to a close. Cannon converted only the last of those.

GHA were unfazed as they started the second half. Noonan kicked another goal after a high tackle. Then Ian Smith not only blocked an opposition clearance, but he caught ball cleanly to allow Pinder to send Ross McClymont in for a try in 54 minutes. Noonan’s conversion cut the margin to 19-22, and six minutes later Pinder’s run up the left touchline let Andy Gillman in. Noonan, of course, converted, and he added his fifth penalty goal after 67 minutes. Mark Hare was the fifth player to see the referee’s yellow card, the victim of repeated team infringements, and GHA might well have profited from the consequent numerical advantage if the referee had allowed the advantage that they ought to have had from their forwards’ percussion play in the right corner.

Source: Bill McMurtrie

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