Liberton RFC 20 – 12 Earlston RFC
Writtin by:- Chris McKenzie
This weekend had the potential to be massive for everyone at Liberton FP Rugby Club. The guys had the chance to make it 4 wins in a row and continue their turn around in fortunes this season and the ladies had their 1st ever game of XV’s and at home against Kelso/Gala Ladies. That match report to follow this one.
Liberton went into this with their minds set on one thing. WINNING. After a evening filled with snow there was question marks of whether the game would be on. But luckily for us Coach Reilly decided to get up and do a pitch inspection at 7 am and gave a relieved Liberton Squad the good news the the match would go ahead.
So in freezing conditions we started the game going up the hill and into the wind receiving the ball. The ball was not taken cleanly and possession was handed to Earlston who attacked but a strong defensive set produced turn over ball and a chance to clear our lines. Unfortunatly for us this wasnt to be the case as the ball was kicked against one of our on players and a scrum was awarded for accidental offside.
Earlston stayed on the offensive for the next 5 minutes but the ferocious Liberton defence kept them at bay. Eventually putting them into touch. Liberton now had the chance to clear their lines again from a line out on their own 5 meter line. Finally a phase of possession without an error aloud Liberton to clear their lines but the ball was kept in field and aloud Earlston to counter attack out pacing the covering forwards and last ditch tackle but Will Ross saving their blushes for now. It would be another compound of errors that would hand Earlston the first points of the game. With a scrum crumbing backwards a rushed pass back went over the the stand off’s head and the bouch of the ball went Earlston’s way and with a swift pick up their open side flanker dived over under the posts. Con scored. 0 – 7
This finally shook Liberton into life and from the restart Liberton retained possession and played multiple phases mixing between backs and forwards. Eventually the ball made its way along the back line and with the grace of a ballerina, with a moustache, skipped and spun around no less than 4 players to go in under the posts with everyone in his dust. Con successful. 7 – 7.
The rest of the half saw no team take a hold of the game with both sides enjoying plenty of possession but not able to do anything with it. Until Liberton were awarded a penalty deep in Earlston’s half which was slotted home by Darren Tiffney. 10 – 7
The last score of the half happened with what can only be described as a pure fluke up steps Darren Tiffney putting his whole 16 stone frame through the ball curled a drop goal sweetly in from 45m out splitting the uprights. 13 – 7
HT 10 – 7
Liberton started the second half from the first whistle constantly putting pressure on the Earlston line but somehow they always managed to halt the attack and clear their lines. But pressure always begins to tell and the rather large frame of Sam Wynn managed to squeeze himself over the line. Con Successful. 20 – 7
The next spell of play was all Liberton building the phases and linking well with backs and forwards. But the Earlston defence stayed strong. No matter how much the Liberton players tried they could not break through that defense. Even having to tries held up over the line.
Earlston were to get the last say in this game though. From a tap penalty on the half they quickly made ground and received another penalty, the option of a tap penalty proved to be a good one after one phase the Earlston prop belly flopped over the line in the corner to score. Con Missed. 20 – 12.
FT 20 – 12
In a game that could have went either way, ultimately it was Libertons defence that held out and the mix of play between backs and forwards. Another game that showed Liberton progress and finally everything coming together. Lets build on this progress and get another win next week against the Edinburgh Uni Medics.
1. Paul Millar 2. Callum Williamson 3. Dave Brown 4. Sam Wynn 5. Andy Dodd 6. Andres Rodriguez 7. Jason Tait 8. Craig Fraser 9. Jordan Damms 10. Darren Tiffney 11. Mitchell Toivonen 12. Nathan James 13. Colin Scott 14 Juan Lopez 15. William Ross
Scott Buchan, Michael Steel, David Dyce, Mihai Boldor, Rhys Taylor, Kyle Semple