Stirling County 28 - 19 Hawick: Hosts come from behind

No-one quite knew what to expect from this opening encounter of the season, so numerous were the changes for both teams.

Stirling had to come from behind against Hawick before running out deserved winners.

However, the unfamiliar looking line-ups conjured an entertaining contest.

The scoreboard began ticking as early as the third minute when Hawick’s Kirk Ford scampered over, subsequently converting his own score.

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A Matt Lamb try reduced the deficit and Jonny Hope edged County ahead with a penalty before the visitors pulled away with tries by Darcy Graham and Gary Johnstone, the former goalled by Ford.

Hope was again on target with the boot in reply before Bruce Sorbie went over, Hope converting to leave it finely poised at half-time.

County improved after the break. Hope nudged them ahead and Ruaridh Leishman stretched the lead when he barged over, Hope again adding the extras.

Tighter home defence denied Hawick attacking options and Stirling kept them penned back for long periods and ran out deserved winners.