Rugby: Thompson is hailed after top display

COACH Rob Moffat has paid tribute to Jim Thompson after this grandson of late commentary legend Bill McLaren starred in his Edinburgh Rugby side's 9-7 victory over Stade Français at Murrayfield.

Edinburgh were never going to be able to qualify for the group stages of the Heineken European Cup but pride was on the line and Thompson rose to the occasion more than anyone on an emotional day which started with a minute's applause for his grandfather.

Moffat said: "Jim didn't have an easy week so that performance said a lot about his character.

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"He wanted to play and, with his grandmother at the game, I was glad he played well.

"We started him on the wing and gave him a good run at full back. Jim is one of those guys who looks as though he has time in what he does."

Thompson's switch to full back came as a consequence of the substitution of full back Chris Paterson – a move deemed necessary by Moffat despite the player's three match winning penalties.

"Chris has been tired for the last couple of weeks in training. He does not shirk anything but went into the game a bit flat so I was always going to take him off a bit early. Phil Godman, Jim Thompson and Greig Laidlaw can all kick goals so we have other kicking options," said Moffat.

• EDINBURGH EAGLES will tomorrow enter the draw for round two of the Carnegie rugby league challenge cup after a 36-32 win at Gloucester University.

Mike Wallace claimed a hat-trick of tries with John Cox, Ash Carroll and Rory McLeod also crossing. Andy Grodynski landed all six conversions.

"Anyone next except the Navy away at Portsmouth," said proud coach Angus McNab as his side now stand one win away from possibly entertaining the likes of Barrow or Halifax.