Bowl victory gives Scots boost ahead of Edinburgh Sevens

A TRY in injury time by Edinburgh winger Andrew Turnbull and the conversion by Glasgow Warrior Peter Horne gave Scotland a 21-19 victory over Kenya in the Bowl final in yesterday's second day of the Emirates Airline London Sevens.

Gaining silverware at Twickenham should now give the Scotland squad confidence ahead of the Edinburgh Sevens at Murrayfield next weekend, a confidence that will be boosted by the expected return to the international sevens stage of Colin Gregor and Jim Thompson.

But Scotland coach Graham Shiel warned that, with both Samoa and Fiji in their group, the Scots will have to improve their game if they are to qualify for the cup quarter-finals.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"To have Samoa and Fiji in our group will make it a challenge," said Shiel. "If we can step up, well and good. We'll give it our best shot. But the standard of sevens here from all countries is the highest I've seen on the circuit this season."

Scotland, however, showed they can compete against Samoa by running the Pacific islanders desperately close on Saturday, and were foiled only by their inability to convert tries.

"It's been a really challenging weekend for us but overall I'm delighted with the performance from the boys. We had one blip against Canada but we put that down to a little bit of inexperience," said Shiel.

Scotland began day two at Twickenham with a 26-0 Bowl quarter-final win over Portugal that included a hat-trick of tries by Lee Jones. Then, in the semi-final, Scotland faced Spain, a country that has invested heavily in sevens and which showed their new skills against the Scots.

Two tries and two conversions by another of the Scots' successes, Horne, and a touchdown by Turnbull were enough to give Scotland a 19-17 win over the Iberian side for a place in the final against Kenya.

In the Bowl final great Scots defence thwarted the pacy Kenyans and, with the Scots conjuring up tries by Tom Brown and Jones, both converted by Horne for what seemed a secure 14-5 lead, it looked like job done.

But Kenya hit back with two converted tries to take a 19-14 lead, only for Turnbull to blaze through for the winning score.

Overall South Africa emerged as London winners but it was New Zealand who stole the show by wrapping up the World Series title after winning their Cup quarter-final, albeit they subsequently lost to Fiji in the semi.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

But their title triumph means that Murrayfield will be a mere lap of honour for the men in black. lEdinburgh back rower Scott Newlands has signed for the French second division outfit Oyonnax, who finished in eighth place in the league table this season.

The 25-year-old, who spent the weekend in London with the Scotland sevens squad, was freed last week after four seasons with the capital club.

He is the third player to move to France from the Scottish professional squads this season, following Craig Hamilton who has switched from Edinburgh to Tarbes and Max Evans who has signed for Castres from Glasgow.