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© 2019 by MELROSE Rugby Ltd. 

Tel: 01896822993 

Email: office@melroserugby.org

 @MelroseRugby and @Sthrn_Knights

DIRECTOR OF RUGBY'S BLOG

Mike Dalgetty

 

Monday 11 November 2019

It's been a  strange weekend, it's rare to think so much has been achieved on the back of two disappointing results.

Our first Southern Knights fixture was a success, a great crowd and whilst a disappointing result we have had very positive feedback. So onwards and upwards, as we now face a trip to Stirling which will be a huge test after their win over Boroughmuir Bears.

 

Historically, Glasgow teams tend to get more pro support than this side of the country so it will be interesting to see how that unfolds.  But, the higher the quality of the game the better, that’s the nature of the beast now. It’s a challenge every week for all involved with the aim of improving standards. Week one set a decent first step so let's keep moving forward.

We have been dealt a blow as Craig Jackson will undergo surgery this week on a torn pec muscle, we wish him all the best and a speedy recovery. Captains curse again I'm afraid.

 

Melrose had a tough afternoon at Cartha where we lost badly on the day. Even more disappointing are the injuries to our more experienced players. It’s a tough league and this week Highland will make the long trip to the Greenyards. They are having a great season and they will be out to take advantage of their good form.  This is a rebuilding season for us with so many players having moved up. Our young players have a good future in front of them but you can't teach experience and this is something that probably is shown in the league standings. Of the FOSROC Super6 clubs only Heriots (much to their credit) sit above us, however we will need to work hard to maintain our ambition of being competitive every week.

We have a great bunch  of lads  so give them your full  support this week.

 

It's odd trying to be in two places at once, actually it's impossible, so remember the following week, Saturday 23 November, we have moved our FOSROC Super6 game against Ayr to 5:30pm at the Greenyards, Melrose play Gala at 3pm at Netherdale; so multi tasking is possible with a full day of rugby, a warm up and a pint in between - oh let's not forget it's Ladies Day too!

 

SOUTHERN KNIGHTS GO INTO BATTLE ON SATURDAY AT THE GREENYARDS

Tuesday 5 November 2019

A massive thanks to all those who came along last Saturday for what was a day to remember. The first ever game played under floodlights at The Greenyards and a win to boot. Brilliant in more ways than one.  The day started with Melrose Football Club making use of the facility, the Knights then having a very physical session against each other and then the main game Melrose v Stirling. It was good to get the bonus point and with players returning from injury with a more settled look to the team.

No matter what the eventual outcome of the season may be, it's been a very encouraging start to the campaign and the lads are enjoying their rugby.

The Wasps had a good win against Gala Wanderers on grass at Battery Dyke, so again very well done to them for recovering from a tough day at Jed last week.

 

At last our Melrose FOSROC Super6 franchise the Southern Knights get off the ground this Saturday on the Greenyards at 3pm. Please remember your membership also gets you into these FOSROC Super6 home games. The squad has trained really hard and are looking forward to just getting out there to play rugby. They are genuinely excited to be part of this launch, in what will be a very tough competition. Our club has been very fortunate in so much as we have enjoyed a lot of success over recent years. No doubt we will be judged initially on the basis of what we have been  before, but this is a now a different ball game. Our opposition will all have worked over the summer to ensure they are better than they were. Better prepared, fitter, and more organised. I think this will be a very difficult competition that will raise standards and for that reason games will as they should be really tough to win.

 

It’s a massive day for Melrose Rugby this coming Saturday, with the Club side away in action and this historic game at the same time, one thing for sure it won’t be for the faint-hearted.

 

 

BACK AT THE GREENYARDS

Monday 28 October 2019

It seems like an eternity ago since Helen and I left 30 degrees in Spain, now winter seems to be rapidly approaching with a bit of frost about. The new pitch is now open and in use, so this week sees us return to “normality”, so if you haven’t been down please come along to have a look at the new facility.

It's our official opening this Saturday 2 November, so well worth the visit. For those who perhaps wonder why we wanted the artificial surface perhaps the first 10 days of use gives us a little hint of what we can achieve. We had two U16 games on it on last Wednesday, followed by another on Friday afternoon. On Tuesday we had 60 rugby players on it and on Wednesday it was full of kids footy. On Thursday we had kids footy from 6pm till 7.15pm followed by  over 70 of our U16s, 1XV and Super6 teams training. So around 450/500 on the Greenyards under lights receiving quality input. Surely that has to be beneficial to all concerned. Is it a more complicated animal in terms of management of course it is, but surely for all the right reasons.

 

The 1XV will be looking to get back to winning ways after their poor result against Biggar. Injuries have taken their toll with key players missing. Chris Raymond who has been outstanding in every game had to return home a couple of weeks ago as his Granny passed away. He played Sevens with his mates and broke his fibia and tibia, so sadly you wont be seeing Chris for a while, a huge miss for us. Hopefully some others will begin to return this week  to boost Jonno’s very young side, they need your support in what's been an outstanding start to their season.

 

Super6 starts next week and we are stepping up training for the first game on the 9 November, 3pm at the Greenyards. Rob is excited about the Knights  new season and is  looking forward to us just getting out onto the pitch to play rugby.

Hopefully see you all on Saturday.

THREE FROM THREE

Tuesday 24 September 2019

If ever we needed to show Melrose Rugby is still alive and kicking then the weekend past surely did that with a little to spare. Firstly the Under 16 and 18’s held a successful  3 club round robin game session  on Saturday morning. The club was full of kids enjoying themselves, then the adults had their chance with a great win against Watsonians. Supporters were treated to a very open game with the boys eventually gaining a bonus point win over  a lively visiting  side. Three from three is a great start to our season

With 19 games to go it’s a little early to get carried away as the squad will be tested as injuries come into play. However it’s a decent start. Highland and Biggar look to be amongst the clubs that will battle for the promotion spot along with Heriots with a few other clubs that will definitely get stronger as their season progresses. We will take one week at a time and just work hard to do our best each week.

Sunday saw a huge turnout of kids and parents  for the Mini tournament. There were action packed grudge matches with sons of coaches  pitted against each other. Morgan Chrystie was weaving his magic for Peebles P3s against Ross Fords son in a Gala strip. It’s a funny old world at times but what better sight is there to see  with so many kids playing rugby for fun.

Im off to Spain for 3 weeks so by the time I return the  floodlights will be up and the Greenyards  hopefully finished. I can assure you its just a coincidence that im away when  they go up. Have no doubts when we  you drive down into town at night and see the Greenyards in its fully glory it will look a bit special . We have waited a long time for floodlights but they will be worth the wait , they are fully LED and of TV standard.  The lights and the pitch now give us fantastic training facility on top of a match day experience

 

Finally you will have seen the press release for the 2020 Sevens.  A festival of Rugby and enjoyment.  Melrose Sevens must always be progressive in order to cope with an ever changing rugby landscape . Lets face it Ned Haig was a bit adventurous in 1883 when  he came up with the daft idea of playing rugby with only 7 players but hey it hasn’t half caught on.  The tournament deserves the energy now being  invested in it  , it shows respect and a commitment to those who have  been before and made it the success it is.

 

Well im off to enjoy a wee beer in the sun  with Mrs D  and some friends.(yes I do have some left) . I can’t believe Im telling you this but we are going to the local plaza on Wednesday for a sell out “party” with LES McKEOWN  AND  THE BAY CITY ROLLERS,  I was more of a Deep Purple man myself back in the day but im told I WILL enjoy myself  or else

Apparently  IT’S A GAME and just a SUMMER LOVE SENSATION, so lets KEEP ON DANCING, SO WE REMEMBER ,  in case we LET THE MUSIC DIE  , how sad is that from a bald 64 and a bit yr old.  But Is your memory as good?

 

Honesty Ritchie Blackmore and Ian Gillan, Jon Lord, Ian Paice were “the men” back in the  long haired day so its going to be a BLACK NIGHT but that’s what happens after 4o years with A STRANGE KIND OF WOMAN

 

As they say BY BY BABY, cameras are definitely not allowed on this holiday,  I wonder do you think three weeks in the sun will get my hair to grow back?

HAPPY RUGBY DAYS

Monday 16 September 2019

I have been fortunate enough to have enjoyed  quite a few “happy rugby days” over the last couple of decades and I must say I’m not sure very many if indeed any were more satisfying than last Saturday. This very young squad took on a big side, that many have said are favourites to win the single promotion spot this season. You could tell why, as they are as you would expect from a side influenced by Phil Smith, a well drilled team, looking to play open rugby. It was a game Heriots could have won, but most agreed after the game that we were slightly the better on the day.

 

The most pleasing aspect has to be we were abrasive, we were well organised and have now set our standards that in theory show we could be competitive for that top spot.  We will need luck as the squad is not blessed with huge numbers and with 20 games to go, a hell of a lot can change. But by gum it’s a decent and very encouraging start so well done to Coaches Stuart Johnson, Chris Dalgleish and Bill Noble

This is a time of  change within the club game and it was pleasing to see  and hear the same old faces and voices at Goldenacre supporting their respective clubs. I would have been disappointed if “The Bear’s” dulcet tones hadn’t wished us well!!!!!  at some point in the afternoon. He’s a great club man and does his club proud.

 

I am genuinely excited by the prospect of Super 6 rugby, it's clear our experienced players needed a change, they needed new targets set. At the very least it will be hugely interesting to see how it all pans out especially on the back of a brand new facility that looks outstanding. I can't wait to see the Greenyards under floodlights , I think it will be spectacular.

 

It was a busy Saturday morning as the Super 6 squad  trained with our under 18s. The young lads who had also trained with the 1st XV on Thursday night, looked like they had a ball on Saturday. They can only benefit from the confidence and the experience gained by working alongside good players.

One club is the message and it's one we will do our best to make work. The nature of the beast probably means at times the parts move in different directions and I think that perhaps could happen within some clubs, as it will be difficult to avoid. But it is and has to remain a priority for us, we must all work together within the club for its greater good.

 

A challenge  especially if we wish to make it so but one we supporters can play a real part to ensure we all #make it happen.

 

We welcome Watsonians this week at Annay Road, coached By Bruce Ruthven and Gordon “Hoss” Smith of our 1975 Melrose winning Sevens team. Hoss has  recently returned  from New Zealand so no doubt these guys will want to put one over on us---another interesting day ahead

YOUR CLUB NEEDS YOU

Tuesday 27  August 2019

It's never great to lose games, especially to local rivals in the Border League , however we can be greatly encouraged by the performance of our very young Club team. They started a bit nervously going 15.0 down in the first quarter. However on balance they could have and should have gone in at half time in front. With 10 minutes to go we were 22-15 ahead and looking more confident but fair play to Jed their experience shone through in the end for a narrow victory.

Hawick in the Cup away is the hardest fixture we could possibly have had especially in the Preliminary round but the boys will be as they say “up for it”. Physically this will be a test as we have to presume Hawick will have ambitions to win the Premiership this season. I’m sure the players would all appreciate your support  in what no doubt will be a rousing welcome so please, lets see you at Mansfield.

 

If you're driving past the Greenyards this week “Don’t Panic”  Captain Mannering, you haven’t lost the plot. The field is having one of its last stages completed, where a layer of asphalt is laid down. So I guess for a few days it will look like a car park. Next stage is the cushion  and then it will turn green with the carpet, so we are not that far away from seeing the completed facility. The pitch fencing is in place, the pathway is completed and the lights will be completed at the end of the process with everything touch wood seemingly on time. Wet weather can affect the final stages of laying the sand and rubber, so hopefully that bit will behave itself.

 

Thanks to those who have very quickly signed up for the new season and for those still to do so, it’s the first league game of a new era next week—"YOUR CLUB NEEDS YOU”

I'm saving up for a beer so come and join me at Annay Road and the Greenyards. As usual I will be happy to chat and answer any rugby question you may have

 

 

 

 

BACK AT THE GREENYARDS

Monday 28 October 2019

It seems like an eternity ago since Helen and I left 30 degrees in Spain, now winter seems to be rapidly approaching with a bit of frost about. The new pitch is now open and in use, so this week sees us return to “normality”, so if you haven’t been down please come along to have a look at the new facility.

It's our official opening this Saturday 2 November, so well worth the visit. For those who perhaps wonder why we wanted the artificial surface perhaps the first 10 days of use gives us a little hint of what we can achieve. We had two U16 games on it on last Wednesday, followed by another on Friday afternoon. On Tuesday we had 60 rugby players on it and on Wednesday it was full of kids footy. On Thursday we had kids footy from 6pm till 7.15pm followed by  over 70 of our U16s, 1XV and Super6 teams training. So around 450/500 on the Greenyards under lights receiving quality input. Surely that has to be beneficial to all concerned. Is it a more complicated animal in terms of management of course it is, but surely for all the right reasons.

 

The 1XV will be looking to get back to winning ways after their poor result against Biggar. Injuries have taken their toll with key players missing. Chris Raymond who has been outstanding in every game had to return home a couple of weeks ago as his Granny passed away. He played Sevens with his mates and broke his fibia and tibia, so sadly you wont be seeing Chris for a while, a huge miss for us. Hopefully some others will begin to return this week  to boost Jonno’s very young side, they need your support in what's been an outstanding start to their season.

 

Super6 starts next week and we are stepping up training for the first game on the 9 November, 3pm at the Greenyards. Rob is excited about the Knights  new season and is  looking forward to us just getting out onto the pitch to play rugby.

Hopefully see you all on Saturday.

THREE FROM THREE

Tuesday 24 September 2019

If ever we needed to show Melrose Rugby is still alive and kicking then the weekend past surely did that with a little to spare. Firstly the Under 16 and 18’s held a successful  3 club round robin game session  on Saturday morning. The club was full of kids enjoying themselves, then the adults had their chance with a great win against Watsonians. Supporters were treated to a very open game with the boys eventually gaining a bonus point win over  a lively visiting  side. Three from three is a great start to our season

With 19 games to go it’s a little early to get carried away as the squad will be tested as injuries come into play. However it’s a decent start. Highland and Biggar look to be amongst the clubs that will battle for the promotion spot along with Heriots with a few other clubs that will definitely get stronger as their season progresses. We will take one week at a time and just work hard to do our best each week.

Sunday saw a huge turnout of kids and parents  for the Mini tournament. There were action packed grudge matches with sons of coaches  pitted against each other. Morgan Chrystie was weaving his magic for Peebles P3s against Ross Fords son in a Gala strip. It’s a funny old world at times but what better sight is there to see  with so many kids playing rugby for fun.

Im off to Spain for 3 weeks so by the time I return the  floodlights will be up and the Greenyards  hopefully finished. I can assure you its just a coincidence that im away when  they go up. Have no doubts when we  you drive down into town at night and see the Greenyards in its fully glory it will look a bit special . We have waited a long time for floodlights but they will be worth the wait , they are fully LED and of TV standard.  The lights and the pitch now give us fantastic training facility on top of a match day experience

 

Finally you will have seen the press release for the 2020 Sevens.  A festival of Rugby and enjoyment.  Melrose Sevens must always be progressive in order to cope with an ever changing rugby landscape . Lets face it Ned Haig was a bit adventurous in 1883 when  he came up with the daft idea of playing rugby with only 7 players but hey it hasn’t half caught on.  The tournament deserves the energy now being  invested in it  , it shows respect and a commitment to those who have  been before and made it the success it is.

 

Well im off to enjoy a wee beer in the sun  with Mrs D  and some friends.(yes I do have some left) . I can’t believe Im telling you this but we are going to the local plaza on Wednesday for a sell out “party” with LES McKEOWN  AND  THE BAY CITY ROLLERS,  I was more of a Deep Purple man myself back in the day but im told I WILL enjoy myself  or else

Apparently  IT’S A GAME and just a SUMMER LOVE SENSATION, so lets KEEP ON DANCING, SO WE REMEMBER ,  in case we LET THE MUSIC DIE  , how sad is that from a bald 64 and a bit yr old.  But Is your memory as good?

 

Honesty Ritchie Blackmore and Ian Gillan, Jon Lord, Ian Paice were “the men” back in the  long haired day so its going to be a BLACK NIGHT but that’s what happens after 4o years with A STRANGE KIND OF WOMAN

 

As they say BY BY BABY, cameras are definitely not allowed on this holiday,  I wonder do you think three weeks in the sun will get my hair to grow back?

HAPPY RUGBY DAYS

Monday 16 September 2019

I have been fortunate enough to have enjoyed  quite a few “happy rugby days” over the last couple of decades and I must say I’m not sure very many if indeed any were more satisfying than last Saturday. This very young squad took on a big side, that many have said are favourites to win the single promotion spot this season. You could tell why, as they are as you would expect from a side influenced by Phil Smith, a well drilled team, looking to play open rugby. It was a game Heriots could have won, but most agreed after the game that we were slightly the better on the day.

 

The most pleasing aspect has to be we were abrasive, we were well organised and have now set our standards that in theory show we could be competitive for that top spot.  We will need luck as the squad is not blessed with huge numbers and with 20 games to go, a hell of a lot can change. But by gum it’s a decent and very encouraging start so well done to Coaches Stuart Johnson, Chris Dalgleish and Bill Noble

This is a time of  change within the club game and it was pleasing to see  and hear the same old faces and voices at Goldenacre supporting their respective clubs. I would have been disappointed if “The Bear’s” dulcet tones hadn’t wished us well!!!!!  at some point in the afternoon. He’s a great club man and does his club proud.

 

I am genuinely excited by the prospect of Super 6 rugby, it's clear our experienced players needed a change, they needed new targets set. At the very least it will be hugely interesting to see how it all pans out especially on the back of a brand new facility that looks outstanding. I can't wait to see the Greenyards under floodlights , I think it will be spectacular.

 

It was a busy Saturday morning as the Super 6 squad  trained with our under 18s. The young lads who had also trained with the 1st XV on Thursday night, looked like they had a ball on Saturday. They can only benefit from the confidence and the experience gained by working alongside good players.

One club is the message and it's one we will do our best to make work. The nature of the beast probably means at times the parts move in different directions and I think that perhaps could happen within some clubs, as it will be difficult to avoid. But it is and has to remain a priority for us, we must all work together within the club for its greater good.

 

A challenge  especially if we wish to make it so but one we supporters can play a real part to ensure we all #make it happen.

 

We welcome Watsonians this week at Annay Road, coached By Bruce Ruthven and Gordon “Hoss” Smith of our 1975 Melrose winning Sevens team. Hoss has  recently returned  from New Zealand so no doubt these guys will want to put one over on us---another interesting day ahead

YOUR CLUB NEEDS YOU

Tuesday 27  August 2019

It's never great to lose games, especially to local rivals in the Border League , however we can be greatly encouraged by the performance of our very young Club team. They started a bit nervously going 15.0 down in the first quarter. However on balance they could have and should have gone in at half time in front. With 10 minutes to go we were 22-15 ahead and looking more confident but fair play to Jed their experience shone through in the end for a narrow victory.

Hawick in the Cup away is the hardest fixture we could possibly have had especially in the Preliminary round but the boys will be as they say “up for it”. Physically this will be a test as we have to presume Hawick will have ambitions to win the Premiership this season. I’m sure the players would all appreciate your support  in what no doubt will be a rousing welcome so please, lets see you at Mansfield.

 

If you're driving past the Greenyards this week “Don’t Panic”  Captain Mannering, you haven’t lost the plot. The field is having one of its last stages completed, where a layer of asphalt is laid down. So I guess for a few days it will look like a car park. Next stage is the cushion  and then it will turn green with the carpet, so we are not that far away from seeing the completed facility. The pitch fencing is in place, the pathway is completed and the lights will be completed at the end of the process with everything touch wood seemingly on time. Wet weather can affect the final stages of laying the sand and rubber, so hopefully that bit will behave itself.

 

Thanks to those who have very quickly signed up for the new season and for those still to do so, it’s the first league game of a new era next week—"YOUR CLUB NEEDS YOU”

I'm saving up for a beer so come and join me at Annay Road and the Greenyards. As usual I will be happy to chat and answer any rugby question you may have

Start of a new era

Tuesday 20 August 2019

This week sees us begin the new season with a Border League fixture away to Jedforest. I guess it's the start of a new era with a young team being the underdogs for the first time in many years.

Jed are always well organised and will be confident after their two sevens tournament wins so it will be very interesting and a pointer as to how the season may unfold.

With so many players moving up to Super 6 we made the decision not to operate a Storm 2nd Xv  side. It's was going to take time to build up the numbers within the amateur club squad. However our numbers have been good with around 40 boys training and to emphasise that those not playing against Jed will team up with Earlston  and Penicuik in a training game before heading down to Riverside.

We will play a few Border 2nd Xv cup games as Melrose Storm again teaming up Earlston to ensure everyone gets games. Numbers are very good, the quality is definitely there  and it's a very young squad which is great to see.

Please get behind the boys and let's just see where this journey takes us 

New teams

New pitch

Floodlights

New website

Look out for your membership forms , pounce on the bargain of the year and join the fun!