Cumbernauld RFC 5 Paisley 10
(Match abandoned after 45 minutes)
The West Division League encounter between Cumbernauld and newly-promoted Paisley had to be abandoned after five minutes of second half play when Cumbernauld captain Ruaridh Clark accidentally collided with match referee Steven Dowling.
The referee suffered suspected ligament damage to his knee and was unable to continue, meaning that the fixture will have to be replayed at some time in the future.
However, this did not detract from the fact that the large turnout of spectators (including a large crowd from Paisley) enjoyed a thrilling encounter at Auchenkilns between two very committed teams.
Both teams demonstrated early doors that they were “up for it” and Cumbernauld struck first blood when, following a Paisley punt upfield, Martin Caldwell fielded brilliantly by collecting his own up-and-under to feed Kevin McTear, the erstwhile hooker filling in at wing forward.
Kevin then fed stand-off Andrew Reid who brilliantly side-stepped the opposition winger to score for Cumbernauld. Andrew then harvested the conversion, having been unsuccessful with an earlier penalty.
This seemed to galvanise a strong Paisley outfit who immediately came back at Cumbernauld and garnered an immediate penalty . At this point the game was end-to-end and in the last play of the first half, Paisley scored a converted try to make the half-time score 10-5 in their favour.
However, the second half had just started when the referee sustained his injury and time was called on an exciting game, played in a good spirit. It has to be said that Cumbernauld’s performance was much improved from the previous week’s encounter at Strathendrick. An important feature was the strength of the forwards as Cumbernauld pushed Paisley off their own ball on a number of occasions with man-of-the-match Andrew Logan taking three strikes against the head on Paisley scrum ball. Kevin McTear, makeshift wing forward also showed up well, striding about the paddock like a youngster.
Next Saturday Cumbernauld visit Clydebank for the usual “war of attrition” so all players are reminded that they must attend training at Auchenkilns on Tuesday and Thursday at 6.15 for a 6.30 start. Clydebank drew their first game of the season and lost on Saturday so they will be waiting to “bite” and take something off Cumbernauld.