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Garnock Secure the Points

(Reported by Tom Dickson)

Garnock gained a hard-fought victory against Cambuslang last Saturday with another single point winning margin at 21 – 20. The game started early due to World Cup matches being played later in the day.

Garnock kicked-off towards the whisky bonds but were immediately on the back foot as Cambuslang fed the ball out to their backs and sped well into the home half. A first minute try seemed inevitable but Jared Reekie was able to chase down the visiting winger just short of the line. Garnock cleared and the danger was over. This was the wakening call Garnock needed and they started to dominate play.

Garnock forced play well inside the Cambuslang half and from a scrum 30 metres out they won the ball against the head. Paul Johnson broke from the base and was unlucky to be held up short of the line. From the Cambuslang clearance to touch 22 metres out Alan Miller won the lineout, the pack drove towards the try line but again were stopped short due to an accidental offside.

Keeping the pressure on the visitors resulted in Garnock winning another lineout and driving to the Cambuslang line but again held up when over the line.

Ten minutes played and several scoring attempts stopped had the spectators using their vocal cords in appreciation of the play on offer.

In the 19th minute, Rory Walker found the touchline at the Cambuslang 5 metre mark. Garnock won the resulting lineout and drove the ball to the scoring area. Matt Shiells repeated his effort from last week with another forwards try. Walker converted to make it 7 – 0 to Garnock.

Six minutes later Cambuslang were on level terms when they forced their way over the Garnock line with A.Bean scoring near the posts and E.Johns converting.

Play swung from end to end in a very entertaining game. Penalties were awarded but none converted until the 37th minute when Walker did succeed from 20 metres to end the half with Garnock in the lead at 10 – 7.

Garnock started the second half in determined fashion forcing Cambuslang well inside their own half of the field of play.

At the 43rd minute Walker stretched the lead to 13 – 7 after Cambuslang were caught offside.

The visitors were awarded a penalty when Garnock were deemed to have handled the ball on the ground. Johns goaled the ball and in the 49th minute the score became 13 – 10.

For the next 10 minutes play slackened off but Garnock moved further ahead when Walker goaled a penalty from 22 metres out after another offside by Cambuslang to make the score 16 – 10 to Garnock.

Their lead was short-lived as Cambuslang eventually found the way through the Garnock defence to score a converted try in the 63rd minute to go into the lead at 16 – 17.

Worse was to follow Garnock when Johns kicked a penalty with 6 minutes left in the game to push the score out to 16 – 20.

Garnock seemed to sense victory was still possible when they gained possession from the restart. They fielded the ball and set up a series of rucks and mauls, creeping ever closer to the Cambuslang try line. The forwards were playing as a combined unit but Cambuslang were defending their lead adequately.

With a minute left on the watch Garnock won another scrum. The ball was fed from Johnson to Walker to Danny Irvine. The centre set off on a powerful run brushing off would-be tacklers to power his way over the try line near the corner flag. With the difficult kick missed Garnock went 21 – 20 in front.

Garnock retained the ball from the kick-off and kicked it into touch for the end of a thoroughly entertaining match by two well balanced sides.

Garnock owed their victory to a team display where the forwards gained more than their share of the scrums. Their lineout play was superb with the jumpers winning their own ball and disrupting the Cambuslang put-in.

This set up the backs who were always willing to test out the opposition and who were secure in their defence. All in all this was a squad victory.

The Garnock squad on the day was (1-19): John Miller (C), Richard O’Neill, Matt Shiells, Lewis McGeachy, David Miller, Luke Wynne, David Ramsey Miller, Alan Miller, Paul Johnson, Rory Walker, Andrew Mitchell, Jared Reekie, Cammy Perry, Ross Johnson, Chrissie Neill, Gavin Paul, Grant Ruxton, Darren Mutch and Danny Irvine.

With no game next Saturday (10th), Garnock’s next game is scheduled for Saturday 17th against Allan Glen’s in Bishopbriggs.

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