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1st XV - Match centre

Hamilton 1st XV
Marr
la 23 maalis 15:00 - Tennent's National League - Division 1 Full time

Bulls fall in to Relegation Mire

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Bulls 3 Marr 34

Bulls fall in to Relegation Mire
Hamilton Bulls lost their final home match by 34 point to 3 to League leaders, Marr rugby, and with other results not going their way fell to second bottom in Tennents’ National league 1. Coach David Gemmell’s frustration was clear to see as the Hamilton lads errors cost them any chance of escaping from the bottom. Certainly Marr were the better side, even after going down to 14 men in 15 minutes when Grant was red carded for foul play. Marr’s play was direct and full of power and pace, putting real pressure on Hamilton’s defence which was breached too often especially when Connor Bickerstaff got on the ball. His pace and eye for space frequently put him into space behind the Hamilton line and only desperate defence kept Marr out.
The game began well for Hamilton who turned over Marr possession deep in their own half and forced their way into Marr territory. Marr conceded a penalty which Mcleish converted for a 3 – 0 lead. However they were immediately pushed onto the defensive and for 15 minutes they were on the back foot. On 25 minutes, Sturgeon equalised from the tee after Josh white was penalised and yellow carded for sealing off in the ruck. Marr’s forwards really turned on the pressure with a series of pick and go phases pushing deep into Bulls 22 making space for hooker Rossi to score under the posts. On 35 minutes Marr full back McLoughlin picked up the ball in space on the wing and ran the length of the park but was stopped just short by a flying tackle by Ben Plant. However Marr were in great field position and after Hamilton’s Taz McLaughlin was yellow carded for tackling a man without the ball, Marr swung the ball from one wing to the other where Liam McLoughlin popped up to dot down in the corner. Half Time 3 – 15.
Bulls received the kick off and showed their intent to run the ball into the strong wind. However the tactic backfired within 2 minutes when Bickerstaff intercepted and nipped in for a converted try. Bulls still tried to use their pacey backs to run out of defence and again it backfired when possession was turned over. Space were appearing all over the park and the Bickerstaff brothers took full advantage, this time Scott crossing in the corner, the conversion coming back off the post.
There is no doubting Hamilton’s commitment or effort, and they took the game to Marr, but their defence was well organised and Bulls could not find a route through. On 50 minutes Marr scored their final try when Bickerstaff’s pace on the blind side saw him skinning the defence for a converted try. The final 20 minutes was frustrating for the spectators with frequent injury interruptions. Hamilton put constant pressure on the Marr line, but could find no way over. The guile and patience which had served the team well earlier in the season was missing and Marr emerged worthy winners by 34 points to 3.

Videos and photos

1XV Marr 23-03-19
48 photos
1XV Marr 23-03-19

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Team selection has not been published for this fixture yet.

League round up

Other Division 1 results

Gala
22
26
GHA
19
26
Aberdeen Grammar Rugby
Dundee HSFP
46
29
Kelso
Jed-Forest
48
24
Kirkcaldy
Musselburgh
15
34
Selkirk

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League table

# Team Pl Pts
6. Musselburgh 22 63
7. Gala 22 63
8. Kelso 22 38
9. Dundee HSFP 22 37
10. Cartha Queens Park 22 37
11. Hamilton 1st XV 22 31
12. Kirkcaldy 22 30

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