RBS Regional Cup: Ayr’s fourth home win in a row secures McLaren Shield

Grant Anderson: Try-scorer. Picture: Jane Barlow
Grant Anderson: Try-scorer. Picture: Jane Barlow
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Ayr became the first winners of the Bill McLaren Shield after achieving their fourth consecutive home win with a comfortable 33-0 victory over GHA in their West Regional Cup match at Millbrae on Saturday.

Despite resting a few top players, Ayr were much too strong for GHA and, in the end, their six-try haul was ample evidence of that. Ayr’s tries came from winger Craig Gossman, No 8 Peter McCallum, who was the man of the match, full back Grant Anderson, back rows Andy Dunlop and Graham Fisken and lock Colin White. Stand-off Finn Russell kicked one penalty goal.

Making his debut for Ayr at this level was 17-year old Danny McCluskey while, at the other end of the age scale, 47-year old tighthead prop Stewart Kerr, who first played for Ayr 29 years ago shared in his side’s triumph.

Also winning by a healthy margin were Dumfries, who defeated Whitecraigs 34-5 at New Abbey Road with a five-try performance. Scorers for Dumfries were man of the match and inside centre Michael Yates, winger Dougie Boyd, lock Ally Mather – his first touchdown in three seasons – prop Gareth McCall and outside centre Kenny Henderson, who also kicked three conversions and one penalty.

“Our fitness showed in the second half,” said club president Donald Brown, adding: “We’re now gelling after a slow start.”

In the other West Cup match, West of Scotland were 24-5 
winners over Dalziel.

In the one match played on Saturday in the East Regional Cup, Musselburgh held off a late challenge by their East Lothian rivals, Haddington, to achieve a 17-16 victory at Neilson Park. Musselburgh had to thank 
winger James Murray, who provided all his side’s points from three tries and a conversion.