National League Two



by Danny McGreish

ACCIES travelled to East Lothian for their fifth game of the season. The two clubs last met some three years ago when both were in Division 2Twod despite the hosts being without a win so far, a hard contest was anticipated.

On a bright sunny day Sam Morely kicked off for the home side and the ball went straight into touch,giving the visitors the scrum. Haddington's huge pack made the visiting eight creak a bit but the ball was put out to Bruce Hunter who carried into the home 22. Accies were awarded a penalty and Jack Anderson kicked to touch for an attacking lineout five metres from the home line. The ball was transferred quickly from the lineout and Andy Duncan came in at pace to burst through the defence and score in the corner.Anderson converted a difficult kick to put the visitors 7-0 up after five minutes. Two minutes later Accies were unfortunate not to add to their tally when a surging run by Martin Gaetano released Stewart Lewis to go over but the referee signalled for a foot in touch and awarded a lineout.

It took the home side 14 minutes before they could get into the Accies half, where they were awarded a penalty. Kick to touch for an attacking lineout and a catch and drive by their big pack was defended well, another penalty and they opted for a scrum. The visitors were driven back and number eight Mark Renton touched down, the conversion was missed. From the restart kick the ball went again to Duncan, who ran through attempted tackles to reach the home 22 where eventually tackled. Rhuraidh Anderson was at hand to gather and go in for the try but the conversion was missed.

In 20 minutes Accies came close after good work by Telfer and Lewis, Duncan was about to take a final scoring pass but was taken out without the ball , the referee who was not having a particularly good match, awarded Accies a penalty but did not issue any additional punishment.

Haddington scored their second try on the half hour. A speculative kick upfield was not cleared by the Accies defence, Morely gathered and put in a crossfield kick for winger Liam Parker to catch and score, the conversion tied the score.

Accies were encamped inside the home 22 and the referee decided that twice in succession Bruce Hunter and Euan Thomson were unable to ground the ball for tries. Second row forward Stewart McMaster however was not to be denied, as he gathered and drove over for a try, the conversion was missed.

Anderson kicked off the second period and again Accies were again attacking the home line. A really good handling move down the right hand side released Jamie Young to drive very close to the try line, before being bundled into touch. An injury to Anderson forced him to retire and he was replaced by Callum McKechnie also Kyle McNulty and former Club Captain Stewart Lamont came off the bench but unfortunately for both McKechnie and Lamont their appearance was short as they both succumbed to further injury.

In 55 minutes, an attempted chip over the home defence was gathered by the Haddington left wing who sprinted upfield into Accies' 22 where is side were awarded a penalty. They opted for a scrum and the referee awarded another penalty, another scrum another infringement by Accies and a penalty try was awarded, to put the hosts in front for the first time.

Accies were back in front when Anderson kicked two successful penalties.

In 68 minutes the visitors scored their fourth and bonus point score after another Duncan break, the ball was transferred across the pitch for Euan Thomson to finish, Anderson added the conversion.

This was a very good victory for Accies as Neilson park is a difficult place to record a win . The visitors were never in danger as their" move the ball wide" approach and support at speed had their opponents gasping in the closing period. A good team performance with Duncan exceptional.

ACCIES: B Hamilton; S Campbell, S Docherty, E Thomson, S McMaster, K Wood, J Thomson, G Telfer, S Lewis, J Anderson GMGaetano, B Hunter,R Anderson, A Dunca,. K McNulty, S Lamont, C McKechnie.