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A Game of Two Halves

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Garnock  38  Irvine 5  Reported by Allan McTaggart
Last Saturday Garnock welcomed local rivals Irvine to Lochshore for a West Div.1 game. A bitterly cold East wind blew towards Kilbirnie which had a significant effect on the match.
After a minute’s silence in memory of the tragic passing of a young Garnock player’s wife, the home team kicked off with wind advantage.
Scrum half Keir Walker soon made a nice break to the left corner and from the ensuing lneout captain Matt Shiells barged over for his usual trademark try, converted by Walker. 7-0 to the hosts after 4 minutes.
Garnock forwards were dominating play but despite two mazy runs by centre Jordan Taggart Garnock failed to set up scoring chances. However in 15 minutes a penalty kick to the left corner led to a carbon copy of the opening try by Shiells with a Walker conversion making the score 14-0.
 They increased this to 21-0 in 25 minutes  when good forward pressure led to a penalty below the posts. Keir Walker ran the ball, received a loop pass to score a try which he converted.
The under strength Irvine XV were not really in the game, with Garnock’s experienced standoff Gareth McCrorie controlling play. He made a lovely break from halfway with his halfback partner Walker on hand to score another converted try. With a bonus point secured, McCrorie again breached the away defence setting up right winger Tony Woods for an unconverted try. 33-0 at the interval.
With the wind now gale force, Irvine dominated field position all through the second half. Garnock’s defence was equal to the task, only conceding 1 try when full back Craig Hobson squeezed over in the right corner.
Garnock introduced seasoned subs Danny Irvine, James Gibb and Alan Brocket, with Irvine making his typical barnstorming runs from centre. One of these led to McCrorie making a long speedy run from midfield to score in the right corner and the game petered out with Garnock victorious by 38 points to 5.
Garnock squad.   Neill, Woods, Taggart, Reekie, F.Brocket, McCrorie, Walker, Wynn, O’Neill, Shiells, McGeachy, Watson, Johnston, Dominy, Wilson. Subs Richmond, Irvine, Gibb, A Brocket
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