Berwick 19-0 Dalkeith

Shane Armstrong kicked three penalties in widny conditions
Shane Armstrong kicked three penalties in widny conditions

Inspired by a huge home crowd, Berwick rose to the occassion in their biggest game of the season to go six points clear in East League Division 1.

The home side led 16-0 at the break thanks to tries from Tony McDougall and Geoff Logan, with Shane Armstrong adding two penalties.

He kicked a third penalty in the second half to round-off a fantastic performance.

With a very strong wind and a touch of snow in the air it was a day for forwards not backs.

Berwick started well with the early stages played in the Dalkeith 22 and a Shane Armstrong penalty gave them a 3-0 lead.

Dalkeith mounted some pressure of their own, but following a good break up-field and a line-out, the pack drove over for Tony McDougall to touch down. Armstrong missed the difficult conversion but Berwick had an 8-0 advantage.

Berwick sustained the momentum keeping play inside Dalkeith’s half of the field. Good and quick defence kept Berwick in command with Dalkeith giving away a penalty chance which went wide from Armstrong again. Armstrong got another chance soon after and this one sailed over from distance to give Berwick an 11-0 lead.

There was time for a try just before half time. Tom Riddell produced a lengthy kick down field inside their twenty two. The Dalkeith throw went astray and the ball bounced back over the Dalkeith try line. Both teams seemed to watch the ball with the exception of Berwick’s Geoff Logan who showed quick reactions to dive on the ball for the score.

Although the conversion was missed from wide out Berwick lead comfortably 16-0 at half time.

The second half was again dominated by forward play and not surprisingly given the conditions a lot of scrums were given. Berwick spent a lot of time in the Dalkeith half but couldn’t get the scoreboard moving until Armstrong managed to pop a penalty over near the middle of the second half to extend the Berwick lead to 19-0. Berwick continued to dominate territory and quickly shut down any Dalkeith attempts to break free.

The second half trundled on with Berwick keeping play tight and in the Dalkeith half.

With time running out Dalkeith summoned some energy to at last get into the Berwick half to put some consistent pressure onto the home side. The Berwick defence held strong but it took an exceptional tackle from Tommy McColl to deny Dalkeith a consolation try. The winger looked to have found the gap round McColl as last defender only to find himself tackled and bundled into touch with only a couple of yards to the try line.

The determination from McColl to stop the score lifted his teammates and in the last five minutes the Berwick defence showed great resolve to prevent Dalkeith from gaining a single point in consolation. .

Dalkeith are a determined and powerful side but they met their match in Berwick who showed resilience and determination to earn a hard fought victory.