Duns got their 2015/16 league season off to a perfect start at Castle Park on Saturday with a resounding win over Hawick Linden.
Duns kicked off, and for the opening ten minutes or so had all of the territorial advantage but the early passes didn’t quite go to hand. All the home side had to show for this early dominance was a Dale Robertson penalty.
Linden then came more into the match and in fact they took the lead after a series of pick-and-drives by their pack, with flanker Wardle getting the touchdown for an unconverted try.
The remainder of the first half was played almost entirely in the Linden half, with Duns scoring five tries.
Sandy Sanderson scooped up a loose Linden pass and when he lost possession of the ball as he was about to score Lewis Craik was on hand to dot down. The referee awarded the score, although the conversion attempt was wide of it’s mark.
Try number two came from a beautifully delayed pass from skipper Hayden Martin to Dale Robertson who crossed unopposed from 20 metres and added the conversion.
Having come so close only minutes earlier, Sandy Sanderson made no mistake on the half-hour mark going over for the third try behind the posts to make Robertson’s conversion a formality.
Within five minutes, Sanderson had scored his second. A Hayden Martin cross kick was taken on the full by Sanderson, without the need to break his stride, and he dotted down in the corner for the bonus point score.
On the stroke of half time Hayden Martin put in a deft chip over the onrushing defensive line. He and Dale Robertson both gave chase inside the Linden 22 and as if attracted by some giant invisible magnet the ball ended up back in Martin’s hands and he went over for the try. Robertson’s easy conversion made it 34-5 to Duns at the interval.
Linden scored an unconverted try almost straight from the re-start but the next Duns score was straight from the training ground. Duns were awarded a penalty, and kicked to touch. After a clean catch at the lineout, Duns feigned to drive the ball but instead popped a neat pass out to the hooker Cammy Hill who crossed unopposed for a real textbook score.
It was Linden who scored next, a fine solo effort by Colville.
The final two scores of the match went to Duns. A break by Hayden Martin saw him spot a gap and he cross-kicked for Lewis Craik to sprint clear of the covering defence to dive on the loose ball to score. With the last play of the game Dale Robertson broke up the left and delivered a cross kick into the Linden 22. First to the ball was Mark Wilson, newly recruited from Kelso, and he steadied himself, gathered the ball, and crossed for the game’s final try. Lewis Craik converted the second of these tries to make it 51-17.
Duns: Mark Wilson; Sandy Sanderson, Lewis Craik, Dale Robertson and Andrew Baxter; Hayden Martin and Jamie Renton; Dougie Turnbull, Cammy Hill, Dylan Renton, Scott Turnbull, Gavin Tait, Allen Whellans, Bert Grigg and Steven Markby. Replacements - Stephen Chisholm, Euan Reed, Colin Tait and Callum Redden.