Dismal Dingers suffer first defeat of 2013

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DUNS travelled to Langholm on Saturday for an RBS East Division 1 fixture, keen to maintain their unbeaten record in 2013 and eager to build some momentum following their excellent win at Portobello seven days previously.

However, they were brought back to earth with an almighty bump as a rampant home side scored seven tries to register a well deserved bonus point win.

Langholm’s five points, coupled with a win by Linlithgow, leaves Berwick in a very precarious position at the foot of the table.

Langholm is never an easy venue, even more so on a dreary, damp afternoon, with a pitch not suited to the running game which Duns prefer to play. Duns were forced by a variety of circumstances to make no less than nine changes to the squad which had shone the previous week - some positional and some in personnel, while Langholm were at full strength.

Duns tried to play rugby with ball in hand, but all too often lost possession in contact. This, combined with far too many missed first-up tackles, allowed Langholm to build up a substantial lead by half time.

The home side kicked a penalty after three minutes, but thereafter hit Duns with a blitz of tries and had their bonus point in the bag by the interval.

The only reward for the visitors in the first half was a try by David Hutchison, converted by Keiran Wilkinson.

There was some improvement in the second half, where Duns held out for 26 minutes before Langholm scored the first of three more tries.

The young Duns backs - Stuart Thomson at 20 years of age was the only threequarter out of his teens - kept running to the end, and registered a late try from stand off Keiran Wilkinson.

The final score was 48-12 to Langholm, who were by far the better side on the day. They showed commitment and application, and they have done their survival chances in East Division 1 no end of good.

This Saturday the Dingers return to Border Shield action with an away match at Hawick Harlequins - kick off at Wilton Lodge Park is at 3pm.

Duns: David Hutchison; Andrew Baxter, Ross Turner, Stuart Thomson and Lewis Hughes; Keiran Wilkinson and Neil Graham; Scott McCraw, Cammy Hill, Andrew Connor, Duncan Budge ( captain ), James Thorburn, Alexander Auld, Richard Burns and John Walker. The replacements were Robert Grigg and Darren Renton.