Watsonians 40 - 3 Gala: Capital club win maroon wars

Watsonians' Rory Drummond hands off Gala scrum-half Connor Adams at Myreside.  Picture: Ian Rutherford
Watsonians' Rory Drummond hands off Gala scrum-half Connor Adams at Myreside. Picture: Ian Rutherford
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Watsonians secured their first league win since October in some style and, as a result, Gala slipped to the bottom of the table.

The visitors took the lead after five minutes at Myreside, but that was to be the high point of their afternoon as the home side ran in five tries to secure the bonus point victory and move up to sixth.

After the 40-3 win, Watsonians head coach Marcus Di Rollo said: “When we lost at Gala earlier in the season, it was one of our worst performances and the guys were determined to put that right.

“I thought that we were clinical from the start of the match and the guys took their chances well when they came along.

“We are not safe from finishing in the bottom two yet though and we have three big matches to come.”

Bizarrely for a team that controlled the match, Watsonians suffered four yellow cards, two of them in the last 11 minutes for replacement second-row Charlie McLean, meaning he was sent off.

Gala also had one player sin-binned. The Borderers had been dealt a blow in the warm-up when experienced second-row and co-coach Opeta Palepoi was injured.

He was stretchered off before a ball was kicked, Sean Johnstone stepping up from the bench to start.

Home stand-off Ewan Scott missed an early penalty and was then yellow carded three minutes later and Gala took advantage, stand-off Gregor Hunter making no mistake with a penalty.

In the eighth minute Watsonians drew level when full-back Andrew Chalmers kicked a penalty.

In the 19th minute they kicked another penalty through Scott to make it 6-3 as the first quarter ended.

Gala could – and should – have been level in the 22nd minute, but the usually reliable Hunter missed a penalty.

On the half hour mark ’Sonians scored the first try of the afternoon.

It came when they charged down a clearance kick and centre DJ Innes went over, Scott converting.

They continued in the ascendency and in the 34th minute they gained a second try when winger Scott McKean made it 18-3. That was the way it was at the break.

Gala would have been looking for a quick start to the second half, but they got the opposite, Scott kicking another penalty to make it 21-3 to the home side.

In the 44th minute home centre Scott McLeod was yellow carded for a high tackle, but when he was off his team scored two tries.

Winger Keith Young and back-row Viliami Fihaki went over to clinch the bonus point.

Try number five for the hosts came with 17 minutes to go, scrum-half Reiss Cullen the scorer this time with Scott converting to make it 40-3.