Currie Chieftains let a home semi-final play-off slip from their grasp as a dogged Edinburgh Accies put on a show of defiance to deny them the advantage at the climax of the Premiership season.
Currie now have to go to Goldenacre to face Heriot’s as the only non-Super 6 club in contention for the title that will be the last before the new league structure kicks in.
Coach Mark Cairns said: “It was frustrating. It feels a bit like a loss. But we did win and we still go into our semi-final with confidence – not bad for a bunch of guys that aren’t good enough for Super 6.
“Our task today was to get another game at Malleny. You never know, Melrose might go to Ayr and win and if we can beat Heriot’s we could have another game here. But that’s not in our hands. What is in our hands is a massive match. The pressure is now on Heriot’s because they are at home but we’ve beaten them there already this season.”
Accies coach Derek O’Riordon was the more upbeat of the two despite a season that yielded only two wins and would have ended in relegation but for the advent of the Super 6.
“It was a good performance, he said. “We went toe to toe with them and the boys stood up. I’m really proud of the shift the boys put in today.”
Currie opened the scoring within ten minutes when No 8 Scott McGinley picked up from the back of a scrum to charge through a gap and touch down. Stand-off Gregor Hunter converted.
But Accies were not prepared to roll over and when centre Robbie Kent made a clean break in the middle before kicking ahead, Scotland 7s squad member Mungo Mason got on the end of it to dive over.
Play was confined to the area between the 22s with little space for free running until Currie cut down on handling errors and sent the ball wide for Hunter to slide in for his team’s second try and then convert it himself.
It was 14-5 at half-time and stayed that way while the two packs slugged it out. In the final quarter, the game was held up for several minutes for an injury to Accies replacement Mark Sinclair before a final flourish by Currie that produced a third try for centre Robbie Nelson. A hasty drop-kick wasted the conversion as Currie scrambled to snatch the bonus-point try that would have got home advantage but it was too late.