Scott McKean does the trick as Watsonians are promoted

Jubilant Watsonians players celebrate at full-time, with Saturdays win finally clinching a return to the top flight for the Edinburgh side. Picture: Ian Rutherford

Jubilant Watsonians players celebrate at full-time, with Saturdays win finally clinching a return to the top flight for the Edinburgh side. Picture: Ian Rutherford

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Winger Scott McKean scored a hat-trick of tries to lead Watsonians to a 61-17 win over Howe of Fife on Saturday afternoon and help them clinch the BT National League 1 title.

The Edinburgh outfit knew that a bonus-point win would lead them to the trophy and, after a blistering start, they had all but won it by half-time.

Marcus Di Rollo, who coaches the team with fellow former Scotland cap Simon Taylor, said: “I am really proud of this group of players because this is a tough league to get out of.”

Having often finished in the top three or four in the second tier in recent seasons, but never quite getting over the promotion line, Di Rollo added: “In previous years we have always fallen away just after Christmas. But this time the boys just kept on going and in fact we have saved some of our best performances for the last few weeks when it has really mattered.”

Captain Ali Marsh added: “The guys have been excellent this season and have kept going even when things got tough.

“We got off to a good start and then built momentum and the guys have all pushed each other to be the best they can be.

“I’d like to pay tribute to the way that my fellow prop Martin Christie captained the side before he got injured and we will all enjoy our time off before looking ahead to the challenges of next term.”

For the home side as well as McKean, Callum Harvey and Dylan Rowe impressed.

Howe took the lead thanks to a penalty by Angus Guthrie, but Sonians scored four tries before the interval. They came from Scott McLeod, McKean, Rory Drummond and Reiss Cullen. The second half got underway as the first had ended with a Watsonians try.

McKean was the scorer and he soon completed his hat-trick to make it 42-10.

Ewan Miller, replacement Jonny Neary and Romain Denonain added further tries, while skipper Stewart Lathangie grabbed a consolation for Howe.

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