Monday February 23rd 2015
Reporter Richard Payne
Murrayfield Wanderers gave Lasswade a bit of a game in the first leg in November, going down 17-39 in the end. It was about that time that they took possession of the bottom spot and they have not moved from it since, managing just two draws against other relegation candidates. For them, staying in National 3 was already dependent on highly improbable mathematics and Lasswade merely put the issue beyond doubt.
The gap between the top of the table and the bottom became evident within three minutes when Clark touched down under the posts to complete a sequence started at a Lasswade lineout 70 metres down the park. Dougie Hearn received the restart kick and evaded several feeble tackles to set up a try for Kyle Smith in the corner.
With the cold stiff breeze at their backs Murrayfield found some balance in territory during the next ten minutes but then the flood gates burst again. Six tries rained in at roughly four minute intervals and from all parts of the field. Four conversions by Andy Hall brought on the 48-0 half time score.
With the bonus try win surely secure, Lasswade captain, Billingham, had two remaining objectives: to better PL’s 85-14 rout of Wanderers the previous week preferably with a complete shut-out.
With the added bonus of symmetry both were achieved as his side ran in eight more tries in the second period with four more conversions. To Wanderers’ credit they stayed remarkably resilient and held out for the last four minutes to prevent the century.
Neil Clark led the try count with four, Gladstone achieved a hat trick and Borthwick a pair, while Kyle Smith, Dave and Andy Hall, Lamont, Donald Hearn and Cook all got one each. Seven conversions by Andy Hall and one by Lewis Clarke made up the rest of the tally with the latter also collecting Lasswade Ladies’ man-of-the-match nomination.
While this was an opportunity to run through some plays, Lasswade will keep it in perspective as they prepare for a much more crucial and difficult challenge.
Preston Lodge edged out Dumfries to maintain second place and assert their position as main challengers – although Dumfries, with a game in hand a still in the mix.
The East Lothian side are at Hawthornden this Saturday and a win for Lasswade will bring them within an inch of promotion while an away victory will continue the tension into the final games. The 3pm kick-off clashes with the Scotland Italy game but for PL and Lasswade followers the local derby is likely to take precedence.Tweet Share on Facebook