Rugby relief sets up top of the table clash

Kirkcaldy RFC vs Falkirk RFC'Match 7, BT National League Division 2,'18th October 2014.'Photo: Michael Booth
Kirkcaldy RFC vs Falkirk RFC'Match 7, BT National League Division 2,'18th October 2014.'Photo: Michael Booth

Without any shadow of a doubt Falkirk sucked in a huge sigh of relief as the final whistle blew for full time at Beveridge Park,Kirkcaldy last weekend.

That was because for two-thirds of the match they were completely rudderless and lacked cohesion and penetration.

However, on the strength of their closing quarter performance they probably just deserved to win by scoring three well-worked tries, and finishing on a high note as compared to their earlier lacklustre performance.

In a dourly contested opening period honours remained even,with perhaps Kirkcaldy looking the more comfortable with the ball in hand by taking the game to Falkirk,and that perseverance bore fruit in the 16th minute, in what turned out to be the only score of the first half.

Seizing control of the ball in Falkirk’s 22 metre area, after the visitors had failed to clear their line properly, Kirkcaldy swiftly moved the ball to the opposite side of the pitch, scrum-half Gavin McKenzie broke through for the touchdown near the corner. Finlay Smith converted.

Smith went on to convert a further penalty for the home side in the 45th minute for a 10-0 lead as Falkirk continued to falter.

That was about to change as the away side started to put some decent phases of play together,and following a fairly lengthy passage of concerted pressure in the Fifers’ 22m the back division handled well for Gary Dempsey to force his way over in the corner, with Logan Bonnar adding the very difficult conversion in the 62nd minute.

Obviously buoyed, straight from the re-start, inside-centre Graham Gilliland broke from his own 10m line and linked with the forwards, with Gregor Brodie handling twice before Stewart McCulloch took play on for Dempsey to take the scoring pass and race over for his brace of tries.

Seven minutes later Falkirk snapped up turn-over ball on the centre line, and after the ball went through several pairs of hands Benji Cottle finished off the impressive move, and secured the win.