An unbeaten first XV run stretching back three months and sterling work to increase rugby participation in local schools have led to Edinburgh’s Royal High Corstorphine being recognised by Scottish Rugby and its principal partner, RBS, as Club of the Month for January.
RHC’s firsts have enjoyed a nine-match winning streak, stretching back to 20 October. During January they won both their games in RBS East Regional League Division 1, both away fixtures, to Linlithgow and North Berwick.
The trophy was presented to club President Graham Duff by SRU vice president Donald Macleod at Barnton on Saturday when RHC defeated Berwick and continued their successful run.
The club runs three adult XVs, a successful women’s team, which boasts a number of internationalists – four of whom, scrum-half Louise Dalgliesh, centres Sarah Dixon and Leanne Neary and full-back Steph Johnston played against Italy Women last week – and youth teams at every age level from Primary 1 to sixth year at secondary school.
The club has strong links with the Royal High School, which has a robust rugby heritage and marked at present with senior pupil Scott Simpson playing in the club first XV at centre/full-back.
RHC’s first XV coach, Steven Leckie, has enjoyed a long association with the club which he joined as a player from Haddington. Injury forced him to hang up his boots but after coaching the second XV he became head coach for the first XV around seven years ago.
“A lot of the first XV have come through the youth system,” he said. “We’ve an average age of around 23 and we strive to play a quick, expansive game and be physical at the breakdown.”