Greenock Wanderers 23-34 Stewartry

THE Wanderers hosted Stewartry at Fort Matilda on Saturday with a realistic chance of adding to their points tally as the visitors traditionally do not travel well.

Had it not been for the fact that most of Wanderers forwards were in Wales for the match against Scotland, the result for a long period of the match could have been a home victory.

It all started well for the home side with two penalties by Tyley in the opening five minutes and a try by top scorer Robb making it 11-0.

The home side had elected to play with the strong wind blowing down the pitch in the first half so it was important to get points on the board.

Wanderers' makeshift pack, although they were shoved off the ball for the first two scrums, soon got it together.

Tyley was yellow carded for obstruction in the 20th minute and play was flowing from end to end with both sides' defences tackling well to negate each other.

One effort from Wanderers held the visitors up over the home line for a goal-line drop out.

The locals' backs were seeing plenty of ball and there were some good runs by Darroch and Galbraith, again halted by the visitors staunch defence.

In the 30th minute the visitors finally got on the scoreboard. A series of penalties conceded by the home side in their 22 allowed their winger to score in the corner.

A further prolonged spell of pressure by Stewartry led to a further try for them again out wide on the wing, making it 11-10 right on half-time.

It was disappointing that Wanderers conceded two tries late on in the first half to negate their hard fought lead.

It would make the second half a hard task, as Stewartry were beginning to dominate.

Galbraith did not appear for the second half due to a head knock but Wanderers got off to a great start with a score by Paton making it 16-10.

However the visitors were making good ground with kicks into Wanderers' half, utilising the wind advantage.

From one such play they scored a converted try to take the lead. Despite the spirited defence from the home side Stewartry added a further two to extend their advantage to 29-16.

Wanderers however were not finished and when Robb popped up to score and make it 29-23  the home side at that stage had a losing bonus point.

But Stewartry were piling on the pressure and in the last minute they scored a further try 34 - 23 on the final whistle.

The local side had put up a great effort throughout and have made the selection for their next match in two weeks harder due to the performance of the reserves.

Elsewhere, the Ladies won 64-0 in their first round of the Bowl competition, a fine win to celebrate Hannah Docherty's 100th game. The U13 beaten Kilmarnock 42-14 and Ladies Wasps lost their match 24-5.

Club sponsors: MM SEARCH. Ladies sponsors: Straps of Gourock and Brow House Cosmetics.