All-change as Melrose aim for repeat win

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MELROSE take on Nottingham tonight at Meadow Lane (7.45pm) in the British & Irish Cup looking to repeat the away win they had in the competition there back in 2010/11.

That day the Borderers stunned the home side to win 31-29. It shows how quickly things can change in sport that just seven of that Melrose squad are involved again this time. They are Fraser Thomson, Joe Helps, Nicky Little, Gary Holborn, John Dalziel, Ross Miller and Scott McCormick.

After last week’s late RBS Premiership win at Heriot’s, Melrose have been boosted for the trip by a number of professional players. As well as Thomson and Bruce Dick – the Glasgow Warriors’ EDPs who often turn out for Melrose – Edinburgh quartet Ben Cairns, Sep Visser, Lewis Niven and Harry Leonard are involved, as is another Warriors’ EDP, Jonny Gray. As such, it is a much re-jigged Melrose side, but one which looks reasonably strong with the partnerships of Gray and Peter Eccles in the second row and Dick and Cairns in the centre set to be key.

Melrose have won one and lost one in Pool 8, while Nottingham have lost twice. However, Nottingham, will be a tough nut to crack on home turf having won three of their last five English Championship matches.

Melrose: F Thomson; S Visser, B Cairns, B Dick, J Helps; R Mill, B Colvine; N Little, R Ferguson, G Holborn, J Gray, P Eccles, J Dalziel, A Nagle, G Runciman. Subs: C Keen, L Niven, R Miller, R Ovens, S McCormick, H Leonard, S Chalmers.