A day of sunshine and free-flowing rugby
Having arrived at 9:30 at Dalziel for their tournament with not a lot of game time on the clock in 2017 and with the team looking half asleep, expectations were not particularly high.
However, the boys sprang to life from the first whistle against Livingston and were playing their best rugby of the season from the off. Some fantastic offloads and great support runs quickly lead to the first try of the day. Not content with playing well with the ball in hand, the defensive line was also well marshalled and a couple of turnovers resulted in quick scores out wide leaving the young Bulls 3-0 up by half time. The second half followed a similar pattern, with two more scores, and only a last minute Livingston score prevented a shut out. A comfortable 5-1 win left the team in high spirits.
Due to the tournament scheduling, there was no time to enjoy the winning feeling and the boys were straight back on for their match against the hosts Dalziel. Having found a winning plan, they set about trying to replicate this against tougher opponents. Whilst the game was much closer, a high standard of rugby and some excellent long range tries meant that Dalziel were always playing catch up and the Bulls retained possession towards the end to run the clock down and win 4-3.
The final opponents, Strathaven, had already drawn with Dalziel so the team went into the match knowing that a draw would be enough to clinch the tournament. Once again the boys raced into a lead with some free-flowing rugby and a superb defensive effort. The exertions of the day started to have an effect in the second half and a good Strathaven side scored two late tries to tie the game at 4-4 but were unable to find a way through some resolute Hamilton defending to get the try they needed to win. A debate over the final score resulted in the game being recorded as a 4-3 Hamilton win but as the draw was enough anyway it was irrelevant.
After a tough season, it was pleasing to not only win the tournament but to do so with every player in the squad playing to the best of their ability and producing some excellent rugby as a result. A big well done to all of the players.