Schools rugby: Merchiston show their strength on Canada tour
Merchiston Castle School confirmed their competitive strength this year with an impressive set of pre-season results achieved on their summer tour of Canada, when a 40-strong squad played matches on the east coast of the country against a combination of club and representative sides.
“We played seven games, won six and had a narrow 14-13 loss for the Development XV against Ontario Under-17s. The highlight for the first XV was the win over Ontario U-18s by 30-0,” said Merchiston coach James Boyd.
Merchiston look to be serious challengers this season, with a side that contains at least ten of last season’s XV. The Colinton school will test their readiness for competitive rugby this season by taking part in the Tynedale tournament this weekend before facing Stewart’s Melville at Inverleith a week on Saturday.
Stewart’s Melville College will follow Merchiston to Canada next summer at then end of a season the Inverleith side is hopeful will be successful. “We have about seven boys from last season’s first XV back this year. I’d expect the captain Will Kesley at tighthead prop and Scott Docherty at stand-off to be influential in the side.
“We also have some talented players progressing from Under-16 level, among them district representatives Andrew Manson at scrum half, and Fraser Christie and Hamish Robertson in the back row,” added Lockie.
Stew-Mel have had warm-up games against Howe of Fife and most recently against Heriot’s and Fettes in a triangular tournament. But the big test will be this weekend when Stew-Mel play George Watson’s College at Inverleith.
Heriot’s too are in immediate action this weekend when they take on Glasgow Academy at New Anniesland. Like several other schools, Heriot’s will be looking to the a number of last season’s Under-16 players to bolster their first XV strength, among whom scrum half Finn Murphy and centre Ben Porteous could figure strongly.
The Goldenacre side are pinning much on a tough pre-season season that has made their players fitter and stronger.
In the west of Scotland, Hutcheson’s Grammar School open their campaign with an away game against Marr College, mindful that in the equivalent fixture last season, the Troon school were the victors. Elsewhere, Glasgow High School take on North Berwick High School at Old Anniesland and St Aloysius College play Jordanhill School. On Tayside, Dundee High School, expected to be much stronger this season, face a Robert Gordon’s College side rebuilding after a successful run last year.
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Weather for Edinburgh
Sunday 26 May 2013
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