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Home > News > Hawks v Selkirk Alex Gordon reports
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Your News Hawks v Selkirk Alex Gordon reports
06
JAN

The first match of 2013, saw Selkirk first-foot Old Anniesland, although bus problems put the kick off back by half an hour. Prior to the match a rare preview, in the Herald, saw the local paper back the Soutars to put their challenge back on track, with an away win. It's not clear if the Hawks had seen this assessment but as they warmed up they seemed determined not to let the delayed kick-off put them off of their stride.

There may have been no Selkirk Bannocks on offer from the visitors but they did bring a large physical pack who put a real squeeze on in the scrum. In the initial exchanges Hawks appeared to struggle but a lack of composure from the Selkirk back row saw an unneccesary knock on end any possible threat. The tables were turned as the home front row turned the tables on the visitors setting up a steady platform.

The home side opened the scoring in 9 minutes, when lock, Ruairidh Wilson broke through the home defence. Faced with the Soutars wing, Rory Banks, Wilson lopped into the 22, selling the defender an outrageous dummy as he feigened a pass to his left. Stepping into the right he raced in for the opening try. Veteran full-back, Mike Adamson converted to put the Hawks in the lead. (7-0)

The Soutars now bounced back from this set back, setting up camp in the Hawks half from the re-start. A period of sustained pressure saw Hawks frantically defending their line as Selkirk played through their phases. In the 12th minute Selkirk appeared to have scored as openside, Angus Duckett went over but the defence held him up over the line setting up the scrum. Hawks appeared to have cleared the danger with a clearance to touch but the Soutars were immediately on the attack as full-back Fraser Harkness ran the ball from deep evading tackles as he ran.

Selkirk's effforts seemed to be constantly frustrated by Hawks' defence. A move from Darren Clapperton to Harkness saw the ball go to their lock, Matt Kissick and a try seemed certain before Paddy Bowyer intercepted the next pass to stop the score. The score, when it came had a feeling of inevitability about it when another Harkness break saw him put a pass to Banks who went over for the 5 points after 18 minutes. With Michael McVie missing the goal, Hawks held a narrow advantage. (7-5)

Considering the pressure the hosts had been under the next passage of play came as a surprise. From the kick-off, Hawks put Selkirk under pressure playing with intensity and determination pushing the visitors onto the back foot. They broke again on the left of the park and the second try came from almost the same position as the first had exposing an apparent weakness in the right side of the Souters defence. This time Tom Steven broke from midfield beating the defender and running in from twenty metres, with Adamson doing the business Hawks had a 9 point lead. (14-5)

Selkirk were not finished but Hawks exploited the visitors commitment to attack with clever tactical kicking over the heads of the back three. Awareness of their vulnerability limited their involvement in the offensive battle. There were a number of scares, Selkirk skipper, Gavin Craig seemed to have hacked through and threatened to score but prop John Lohoar saved blushes as he fell and retreived the ball. However a combination of foolish penalties and handling errors saw the threat abate. The staunch Hawks defence paid a great part in the visitor's diminishing composure.

The second half opened and Hawks acted swiftly ending the tie as a competitive fixture. Although Harkness was a constant threat, his attempts to make things happen allowed Hawks to put selkirk under pressure when he failed. A break in midfield saw a wayward pass go to the home side. Allowing Jono Wright to open up on the left wing using his pace to create some space to sprint. Straight running allowed him to exploit the smallest of gaps before he angled his run outpacing the surprise Selkirk defence to score, Adamson once more added the conversion. (21-5)

Harkness continued to provide a threat and may have given Selkirk a brief glimmer of hope, being instrumental in pretty much every Selkirk passage of play. The visitors were piling on the pressure, recycling the ball 9 times. Eventually Harkness took tha ball through the Hawks defence offloading to stand-off, Craig who was able to make the scoring pass to Clapperton. With McVie putting the conversion over the gap came back to 9 points. (21-12)

An hour gone and Hawks started to hunt, in earnest, for the bonus point for 4 tries. First of all, they put Selkirk under pressure in the set piece, in both scrum and line-out. The back line similarily started to dominate their opposite numbers restricting Selkirk to their own 22 for long periods. A final score seemed inevitable, apart from the minor matter of actually scoring. In 76 minutes Selkirk seemed to be dealing with the pressure as the ball passed through the hands of the backline before outsider centre, Scott Hendrie, knocked on midfield on his own 22. The subsequent scrum allowed Hawks to press home the attacking position. As Hawks attacked Selkirk conceded a penalty which Hawks kicked to touch, a clean catch and drive saw Hawks move towards the line before Paul Henderson took his try from close range, with Adamson's 4th conversion the bonus was secure. (28-12)

As the game headed to it's conclusion, Wright looked to have broken through on the far right for a final try but was frantically bundled into touch.

The job completed, the side did everything that was asked of them and with Sonians losing at Myreside to Hills, the team are in a strong position for a succesful push for promotion.

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