28 September 2013
Aberdeen Grammar 22 Currie 23
Aberdeen Grammar’s prospects of surviving in the top flight of the Scottish club game looked to be slim after an appallingly poor second-half performance by the home side handed Currie a first league win and a lifeline at the bottom of the Premiership.
While Currie coach Ally Donaldson was able to hail his side’s qualities, opposite number Kevin Wyness admitted to being embarrassed by the performance after watching his lacklustre charges fade out of the game.
Yet Aberdeen had put in a sound three-try opening half-hour based on solid scrimmaging and back-row play boosted by the effervescent Tony McGinness and the ball-carrying skills of Tom Preece.
An angry Wyness tried to fathom what had gone wrong with a side which had looked full of promise, only to disappear as an attacking force, enabling a determined, gutsy Edinburgh outfit to not only come into the game but to go on and win it.
“I have never been so angry with a group of players,” said Wyness
“We had steamrollered them up front and were set to pick up a fourth try when it all went wrong.
“Our front row had been dominant, while McGinness and Preece were running the show from the back. Our decision-making then let us down, and what followed was embarrassing.
“Players and coaches must take collective responsibility before we take on Heriot’s. It’s not going to be an easy week in training.”
A lone Mark Ryan penalty accounted for all of Grammar’s second half scoring.
Yet Aberdeen seemed to have scored a match-clinching try in 70 minutes when replacement scrum-half Luke Earle-Wright Went over in the corner under a pile of Currie players.
Referee James Matthew’s decision not to award a try was difficult to understand, though it would have been hard on the enterprising Edinburgh side which ended the match in control.
The early forays had given no indication of the final outcome as Grammar surged into the lead after the temporary setback of conceding a fourth-minute penalty, kicked by Currie stand off George Horne.
Grammar scored tries through winger Angus Rennie, centre Harry Duthie and flanker Rob Cessford, two of which were converted by Ryan.
Currie had, however, showed their intent with a try of their own when centre Joe Reynolds cut through a non-existent home defence for a converted try.
Currie took over in the second half, boosted by an early converted try by flanker Mark Cairns, setting the stage for teenager George Horne to cap a fine day with two late match-winning penalties, to the disbelief of a shocked Rubislaw crowd.
© 2013 Jack Nixon
Aberdeen Grammar: Will Wardlaw; Angus Rennie, Harry Duthie (captain), Peceli Nacamavatu, Erland Oag; Mark Ryan, Morgan Ward; Matt Schosser, Sean O’Connor, Struan Cessford, Callum Harvey, Jamie Metcalfe, Rob Cessford, Tony McGuiness, Tom Preece.
Replacements: Sam Bingham, Matt Dixon, Cameron Turner, Steve Aitken, Luke Earle-Wright.
Currie: Ruaridh Smith; Harvey Elms, Ethan Pollock, Jack Broadley, Calum Kerr; George Horne, Joe Stachan; John Cox, Joe Roe, Alastair Hamilton, Gary Temple, Elliot Mitchell, Chris Dumont, Mark Cairns (captain), Ross Weston.
Replacements: Reece Patterson, Graeme Carson, Michael Clements, Ian Vance, Joe Reynolds.