Duns 24-21 Murrayfield Wanderers

Duns vs Murrayfield. Duns' Chris Williamson going over for a try in the second half.
Duns vs Murrayfield. Duns' Chris Williamson going over for a try in the second half.

Duns welcomed Murrayfield Wanderers to castle Park for their final fixture of 2015 and recorded a deserved but hard-fought win.

The early exchanges were even, although from the outset it was clear that the Wanderers big pack would hold sway at the scrum. They shunted Duns off their own ball on many occasions, and the referee penalised Duns frequently for collapsing the retreating scrum.

Duns took the lead from a Dale Robertson penalty on 15 minutes but the Wanderers replied lead with a penalty try. The ref was perhaps a little quick to go under the posts and award the score, but it would have made no difference as the visitors’ big pack were chugging their scrum towards the line and would no doubt have scored anyway. The conversion took them ahead by 7-3.

Duns then enjoyed a good spell. Although severely under the cosh at the scrum, the Duns pack held the upper hand in the loose getting their hands on the ball and making good yards. The referee awarded a penalty against Wanderers, and whilst playing advantage Hayden Martin coolly slotted a drop goal - amazingly the first drop goal scored by Duns for nearly 11 years.

The home side continued to have the better of the exchanges until the interval, and on the stroke of half time Dale Robertson kicked a second penalty to put Duns back in front by 9-7.

Duns started the second half like a house on fire a were awarded a penalty only 5 metres or so short of the line. Chris Williamson took a quick tap and went over for the score.

Then, from a solid scrum base, some fine play led to Hayden Martin finishing off an excellent team score. Dale Robertson added the extras and Duns lead by 21-7.

Duns were straight back into the Wanderers half from the kick off, and were awarded a penalty when the visitors went over offside at a ruck. Dale Robertson calmly slotted the goal to take the home side further ahead.

Wanderers finished the match the stronger side, and were rewarded with two tries in the closing 15 minutes.

Duns: Hayden Martin (captain); Michael Thomson, Stuart Thomson, Dale Robertson and Callum Redden; Ged Lamb and Danny Lamb; James Murphy, Cammy Hill, Gordon Harkins, Gavin Tait, Steven Markby, Charlie Woodhouse, Bert Grigg and Chris Williamson. Replacements - Richard Burns, Dougie Turnbull, Nathan Chisholm, Euan Reed.