|KIRKCALDY 41 PERTHSHIRE 15
George Mangalo is unstoppable on his way to scoring the seventh and final try
It was only when Kirkcaldy scrummage power was muted by Perthshire, short of prop replacements, having to resort to uncontested scrummages in the second half that this Premier 3 game had any sort of competitive feeling about it.
By this time the Blues were 31-8 ahead and their pack in charge of scrummages, striking against the head almost at will. Spurred on by flanker Derek O’Connor ‘Shire contested the final quarter with some stirring counter attacks and thoroughly deserved their second try from No 8 James Wade.
View Michael Booth's photo gallery from this match.
Although Kirkcaldy started well and came close in the opening minute the North Inch men hit back and forced a penalty kicked by centre Jamie Coffey.
The Blues weren’t on the back foot for long and by the 12th minute had taken the ball against the head three times running. With this advantage it was no surprise when they tooK the lead with a pushover try credited to No 8 Liam Neilson.
Five minutes later they repeated this move with Nielson again the scorer but this time player coach Quintan Sanft kicked the conversion.
Former Kirkcaldy captain Greg Wallace, operating at hooker, was at the heart of most Kirkcaldy moves and it was one of his powerful surges that let back row man Rab van Rensberg race away for the third try. The bonus point was in the bag a minute from half time with scrum half Gavin McKenzie wisely using re-cycled ball.
Shaun Orr makes a break which would set up a try for Craig Wilson
Against the run of play in the second half Perthshire centre David Rattray eased in on the right for his side’s first try. Almost from the re-start another Wallace surge set up another try for fellow heavy-weight Craig Wilson.
With ‘Shire prop Andy Flavell unable to continue and no replacement prop available the referee ruled that future scrums would be uncontested for safety reasons. This stripped the Blues of some of their superiority in that it gave ‘Shire a bigger share of possession and they turned this to advantage with Wade’s try converted by Coffey.
Nevertheless the Blues were still in charge. ’Shire lost a line-out on their own throw 10 metres out and the ball popped into Greg Wallace’s hands and there was no stopping him from close range. Five minutes later prop George Mangalo, who up till then had had a quiet afternoon, exploded onto the scene, imperiously swatting away would-be tackles to score his side’s seventh try.
At this stage there was still fifteen minutes left for play and the crowd expected the Blues to pile on additional pressure to improve their points differential. However the remainder of the game just drifted way with Perthshire playing for pride and Kirkcaldy seemingly content that their task for the day had been completed.
Gavin Neilson is hunted down by the Perthshire defence
KIRKCALDY Q Sanft, C Jubb, I Gillies, M Wallace, J Wilson, K Littlejohn, G McKenzie, M Thomson, G Wallace, G Mangalo, S Orr, C Wilson, G Neilson, R van Rensberg L Neilson Replacements:- G Shields, R Girdler, R Lithgow, G Welsh
PERTHSHIRE J Steel, C Assenti, D Rattray, J Coffey, T Pople, D O’Connor, K Doe, D van Amielsvoort, R Dougan, A Flavell, S Forsyth, S Moffat, D O’Riordan, R Angus, J Wade Replacements- L Smith, D Rae, A Brewster
REFEREE M Hose (CRRS)
3 Greg Wallace 2 Rab van Rensberg 1 Gavin McKenzie
15 Orr, 9 M Wallace, Mangalo, 8 G Neilson, 7 Moffat, 6 Gillies, 5 L Neilson, Goodall, 4 McKenzie, 3 Porter, Littlejohn, G Wallace, 2 Thomson, C Wilson, van Rensberg, 1 J Wilson