Gala return to winning ways after early scare

IT NEVER rains, but it pours for Currie. Just past the half-hour mark in this RBS Premiership encounter they had a man advantage and then went 13-10 ahead. The home crowd thought their side may have had a chance for their first home win of the season.

Currie's Adam Alexander resists the attempt of Gala's Grayson Hart to pull him back during the Borders club's victory. Picture: Greg Macvean

Fast forward an hour or so and Mark Cairns and his dejected troops were wandering off the pitch on the back of a 48-16 loss and two of their players were heading to hospital with injuries.

The Edinburgh side are now seven points adrift at the bottom of the table and it will take some effort to haul themselves out of danger over the next eight matches.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Their mainly young team battles hard, as you would expect of a team coached by Ally Donaldson, but at times their defence left a lot to be desired and Gala were clinical when they needed to be to keep their title challenge alive.

After seeing his side run in eight tries Gala head coach George Graham said: “This game was all about getting back to winning ways after two losses in the British & Irish Cup and we did that.

“After the heavy defeat to Leeds I could not have asked more of the guys in training and in this match they showed in patches what they are capable of.

“In the first half Currie really came at us hard, but I always felt we would have too much for them and so it proved in the end.”

After 30 minutes the teams were tied at 10-10 before Gala’s scrum-half Grayson Hart needlessly got himself yellow carded for a punch right in front of the referee Charles Samson.

Other referees may have produced a red for such a needless act, but yellow it was and although Currie scored six points when he was off Gala scored 10.

Those points came through tries by centre Ewan Scott, a superb solo effort, and one by ex-Currie man Grant Somerville.

That Somerville score seemed to knock the stuffing out of Currie and in a fractious second half – punctuated by lengthy delays for injuries to the hosts’ replacements, Jack Broadley (shoulder) and Fraser Watt (neck) – Gala ran in four more tries.

The pick of these came from winger Craig Robertson, his second of the day, while young Gregor Mein is growing into the stand-off spot for the Maroons as well.

Scorers: Currie – Try: Cox. Pens: Horne (3). Con: Horne. Gala – Tries: Palepoi, Robertson (2), Scott, Somerville, Borthwick, penalty try, Dods. Cons: Scott (2), Dods (2).

Currie: R Smith; H Elms, E Pollock, A Alexander, C Kerr; G Horne, R Snedden; J Cox, G Carson, A Hamilton, C MacLean, P Neacsu, M Vernal, R Weston, M Cairns. Subs used: R Patterson, F Watt, G Temple, J Broadley, A Penman.

Gala: A McLean; G Somerville, C Auld, E Scott, C Robertson; G Mein, G Hart; R Sutherland, R Anderson, E McQuillin, C Borthwick, O Palepoi, C Weir, S Cairns, G Graham. Subs used: C Mackintosh, J Hilterbrand, R Todd, A Emond, C Dods.

Referee: C Samson.