Following several days of constant rain congratulations are extended to the Ayr groundsman who worked right up to kick-off to make the pitch almost playable. The players were not fazed by the overhead and underfoot conditions and provided an excellent game of rugby. Ayr guddled the kick-off and from the resulting penalty lineout rolling maul, at 3 minutes, Ben McLean opened the scoring with an unconverted try. Ten minutes later, following several phases of play Ben Cree burrowed over for a try converted by Andy Morrison to give Ayr the lead. At 21 minutes Keiran Clark caught a poor Ayr clearance kick in his own half and cut through the Ayr defence to score a try which David Colvine converted. Ayr retrieved the lead three minutes later when Cree, following slick handling and brute force, mimicked his first try with Morrison adding the extras. With six minutes until the interval Clark struck again bamboozling the Ayr defence to score, with plenty space, with Colvine converting from the touchline. Then, just on the interval, from a well worked move Cammy Black broke clear out wide with an unconverted try to level the scores.
Half time – Ayr 19 Melrose 19
A floodlight failure prolonged the interval and when play resumed only two lights were functioning. Two minutes after the re-start Clark scored his hat-trick and the Melrose bonus point try in impressive manner and Colvine converted. Play continued with both teams striving for a score until, at 68 minutes, the referee, Lee Fish, consulted both captains and the decision was taken, on player safety grounds, to abandon the match with Melrose being awarded the bonus point victory.
Ayr – Cammy Black, C. Easton, Cammy Taylor, Andy Morrison, Zac Howard, Ross McCorkindale, C. Dolan, David Young, S. Collier, Ben Cree, Euan Hamilton, C. Brown, J. Lawton, Pat Macarthur, Morgan Leatherbarrow. Replacements – Kerr Borland, B. Jardine, Seth Rae, Steven Adair, L. Clarke.
Melrose – Keiran Clark, Aidan Cross, David Colvine, Gary McWilliam, James Brown, Christaan Smit, Ethan McVicker, Jake Fairley, Ben McLean, Jack Dobie, Thomas Brown, Gregor Lindsay, Craig Fairbairn, Andrew Bradfield, Ruairidh Lindsay. Replacements – Richard Ferguson, Will Owen, Callum Folan, Archie Spencer, Lewis Mallin.
Referee – Lee Fish