Melrose provided a stunning all-round team performance with four tries to dent Ayr’s championship hopes.
The victory over the Premiership leaders delighted coach John Dalziel. “We have had a horrid time with injury, but we showed a lot more consistency,” he said.
The fact that Melrose also gained the bonus point, added to the overall team display, showed that the challenge for a play-off place is real.
“We know we can get ourselves up for the top games as it took us a bit of time to get a ‘new’ team together, but eventually we did it,” Dalziel added.
Ayr were hampered by an eye injury to Frazier Climo, but coach Calum Forrester blamed the defeat on individual errors and lack of discipline. “To give them penalties was playing right into their hands and not acceptable,” he said.
Melrose got off to the perfect start with a try in the opening minute from Fraser Thomson and rounded off a satisfactory day with Grant Runciman’s try four minutes from the end.
Sam Pecquer added a brace, one in either half (Melrose led 18-9 at the break), while Joe Helps struck three penalties and three conversions.
Lewis Anderson and Grant Anderson scored the Ayr tries, both in the second half.