Ar­gyll and Bute win lo­cal derby against Mull Rugby

The Oban Times - - Sport - 15_t48rugby04

BT West Di­vi­sion 4

AR­GYLL and Bute took on lo­cal ri­vals Isle of Mull RFC at North Con­nel on Satur­day in the sec­ond meet­ing of the teams this sea­son. Isle of Mull, who have been un­lucky not to have won all of their games so far this sea­son, won 22-3 in the re­verse fix­ture at Gar­mony ear­lier in the sea­son.

With Oban Lorne’s BT Di­vi­sion 1 game with Al­lan Glens be­ing post­poned, Ar­gyll were strength­ened by some 1st XV play­ers to cover some key po­si­tions and add some ex­pe­ri­ence to a youth­ful team.

Ar­gyll went ahead with a try in the first 10 min­utes. Craig Wright burst onto a good pass from Dave McCabe to slice through the Mull de­fence and touch down un­der the posts.

The Mull team did not let this dampen their spir­its and scored a fan­tas­tic run­away try from their own half as Ar­gyll lost con­trol of the ball in con­tact. Stand off James Gib­bons con­verted to tie the game at 7-7.

Ar­gyll dom­i­nated the ma­jor­ity of pos­ses­sion and ter­ri­tory in the first half with a high num­ber of scrums and li­ne­outs in the Mull 22. The Muileachs de­fence stood firm and man­aged to turn Ar­gyll over on a few oc­ca­sions and clear their lines. De­spite Ar­gyll and Bute hav­ing the ma­jor­ity of pos­ses­sion the away side looked dan­ger­ous on a couple of oc­ca­sions when they man­aged to break free from their own half, with the fi­nal pass let­ting them down.

The Ar­gyll team fi­nally man­aged to break down the im­pres­sive Mull de­fence with Craig Wight scor­ing his sec­ond try of the af­ter­noon for a 14-7 half­time lead.

Ar­gyll were frus­trated at the break that they did not have more points on the board but were up against a Mull side who were making life dif­fi­cult and also had a vastly im­proved scrim­mage from the pre­vi­ous meet­ing be­tween the teams.

Ar­gyll made a great start to the sec­ond half and scored their third try of the game within five min­utes. Dave McCabe’s miss pass found South African winger Sandile Khu­malo out wide who raced in from the 22 for his first of two tries; 21-7 to Ar­gyll.

The hosts built on their lead adding a fur­ther two scores. A try from Steven Parr was fol­lowed by a sec­ond from winger Khu­malo for an im­pres­sive 35-7 lead.

De­spite the score­line there was al­ways a sense that the is­lan­ders were go­ing to re­main in the game. Mull hit back with a score from Gareth Tait to re­duce the deficit to 35-14.

Ar­gyll, how­ever, re­sponded im­me­di­ately with stand off McCabe scor­ing be­neath the posts to fin­ish Ar­gyll’s scor­ing for the day.

With 10 min­utes re­main­ing Mull fought hard to get back into the game. Re­place­ment stand off Fin­lay Carmichael pulled the strings to cre­ate two tries for the visi­tors in the clos­ing stages with the last try a run­away win­ner for try of the day. The fi­nal score read 42-26 in Ar­gyll and Bute’s favour in an en­ter­tain­ing game be­tween two friendly neigh­bours.

The re­sult gives Ar­gyll and Bute their first points of the sea­son while Mull still sit in third place. This Satur­day Ar­gyll and Bute travel to Scot­stoun, the home of Glas­gow War­riors to take on Hyn­d­land RFC while Mull face league lead­ers Po­lice Scot­land RFC at Gar­mony.

BT Na­tional League Div 1

OBAN Lorne were again left frus­trated on Satur­day with their West Di­vi­sion 1 fix­ture at Al­lan Glens be­ing called off due to an un­playable pitch. This is the third league match the past four weeks that has fallen as a re­sult of the West Coast weather.

The pos­i­tive for Oban Lorne was the im­pres­sive per­for­mance of Craig Wright and Dave McCabe, who gained some vi­tal game time in Ar­gyll and Bute’s West Di­vi­sion 4 fix­ture along with some other 1st XV play­ers. No­tably Cal­lum MacLach­lan came off the bench for Ar­gyll in his come­back from a ham­string in­jury.

Oban Lorne sit in fifth place in the ta­ble hav­ing won three games from five. The Green Ma­chine have a few games in hand on the teams around them and will be hop­ing to climb back up thie ta­ble prior to the turn of the year.

The Green Ma­chine host lowly Cam­bus­lang RFC at Glen­cruit­ten this Satur­day, kick off 2pm. Oban recorded a bonus point 34-16 win at Ca­mubus­lang in the open­ing fix­ture of the sea­son.

Women’s Bowl - Quar­ter Fi­nal

ON A COLD and win­tery Sun­day in Cu­par, Fife a squad of eight Oban Ladies were joined by seven play­ers of the up and com­ing Na­tional De­vel­op­ment League team He­lens­burgh, to take on Howe of Fife on their home pitch. Re­cent storms made for slip­pery pitch con­di­tions but the play­ers from both the Oban and He­lens­burgh teams gelled quickly to field a strong force to be reck­oned with.

The girls in Green took con­trol of the many scrums that were dealt out to dom­i­nate the first half, even de­spite the dif­fi­cult con­di­tions un­der­foot. They were able to keep Howe pinned back in their own ter­ri­tory for the ma­jor­ity of the ini­tial 40 min­utes, with the most no­tice­able break com­ing from a clever kick just be­yond their five-me­tre line. It was quickly chased down and ti­died up by a Howe player, who was tack­led whilst scrum half Au­drey Barr quickly ar­rived on the scene to steal the ball but was un­for­tu­nately called up by the ref­eree for an un­known rea­son.

The ref­eree was quick to ad­mit her mis­take but (again to ev­ery­one’s con­fu­sion) the re­sul­tant scrum was awarded to Howe and un­for­tu­nately did not re­sult in the try that Oban de­served.

With some game chang­ing events, un­for­tu­nately not seen by the ref­eree, in­clud­ing a punch to Oban’s stand off Emma Roxburgh by a Howe of Fife player and early en­gage­ment in the scrums, the Oban team had not man­aged to con­vert their ef­fort into points, and the first half ended evenly on 0- 0.

The start of the sec­ond half be­gan with a couple of storm­ing runs by Howe’s winger to bring the score to 0-10 af­ter only a few min­utes.

Oban re­sponded by re- or­gan­is­ing their de­fen­sive line and the re­main­der of the lat­ter half went on in a sim­i­lar fash­ion to the first.

Again, scrums were the theme of the game with an in­creas­ingly muddy pitch. Oban play­ers were pe­nalised for not rolling away un­der the posts and Howe cap­i­talised on their mis­take to slot an­other three points over the posts, bring­ing the score to 0-13.

The Green Army stayed in the game to the last minute and man­aged a con­so­la­tion score in the dy­ing mo­ments of the game af­ter win­ning a scrum, al­low­ing their winger to run up the pitch and touch down.

The fi­nal score was 5-13 and, with ref­eree de­ci­sions con­sis­tently not fall­ing in their favour, Oban nar­rowly missed out to a tough and phys­i­cal, well drilled Howe of Fife team who will go on to play in the semi-fi­nal of the BT Bowl.

Player of the match was Emma Roxburgh, who came back for this match from a pre­vi­ous in­jury to demon­strate some im­pres­sive tack­ling and an out­stand­ing con­trol of the game. The Oban Ladies travel to Ed­in­burgh next week­end for a league game against Broughton, with their next home game not un­til 2016.

The ladies’ train ev­ery Wed­nes­day at the Oban Rugby Club­house from 6- 8pm, with be­gin­ners very wel­come.

T4 West U16 Con­fer­ence

OBAN’S U16 rugby team made a long trip to Ar­drossan on Sun­day for the team’s West U16 league fix­ture.

De­spite only hav­ing 13 play­ers due to some last minute call offs, Oban man­aged to record an im­pres­sive 43-22 win against a well- drilled Ar­drossan team. This Sun­day the U16 side travel to take on Hill­head/ Jo­dan­hill

T4 West U18 Con­fer­ence

OBAN U18s played out their sec­ond fix­ture this sea­son with a con­vinc­ing 61-5 win at Cartha Queens Park in Glas­gow.

Oban fielded a strong squad with help from play­ers at Mid Ar­gyll and Kin­tyre. This is an­other pos­i­tive step for­ward for U18 rugby in Oban af­ter the teams first out­ing at Cum­ber­nauld that saw them win 17-5.

This Satur­day the U18s are at home to Cum­ber­nu­ald RFC. Kick off noon at Glen­cruit­ten.

T4 Schools Con­fer­ence OBAN High Schools S1, S2 and S3 teams will take part in their lat­est School Con­fer­ence Fix­ture away to Shaw­lands Acad­emy on Wed­nes­day. Oban have played pre­vi­ous fix­tures with Dun­can­rig, Dalziel and Wil­liamwood in the new SRU Schools setup so far this sea­son


ON THE RUN: Alan Wright looks on as Ar­gyll and Bute’s Craig

McGuire drives past the op­po­si­tion.

PILE UP: Play­ers from both teams do ev­ery­thing they can to try and se­cure the ball.

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