Aberdeen Grammar moved smoothly into the semi-finals of the National League Cup, easing past National League 2 side Falkirk who, although game, were not able to contain the classy Rubislaw side who breached the home line 10 times.
Head coach, Ali O’Connor who was realistic enough to recognise his charges would face much sterner opposition in the semi-final on March 30 when they take on National League 1 opponents Kelso in the Borders, but said: ”This was a good, convincing win, while serving as a good workout for our big league game away to Gala on March 2 which, if we win, should go a long way to ensuring we are in the top six, which given there is likely to be a new structure next season is vital to us. We played some great rugby once we got into our stride. In the second row Ewan Stewart’s ball carrying was particularly impressive. Andrew Cook had a great game in the front row, and Sean Mills was a standout at full back, making for a good day for us.”
Grammar took time to get into their stride, which was not surprising, given the number of changes in personnel, including bringing Byrn Perrott into the stand-off berth to form a new partnership with Tommy Morrison. Once these two clicked, the Grammar line kicked into gear, leading to a first half lead of 19-0.
Tries from winger Calum Ruxton, No 8 Greig Ryan and hooker Andrew Cook, two of which were converted by Perrott, put the Aberdeen side in easy street.
The second half was pretty well one-way traffic, as Grammar turned on the style, running in seven tries based on good support play and strong running from in particular Stewart, and centre Nat Coe, and with Ryan directing operations in midfield in harmony with Perrott, the outcome was always going to be a painful one for Falkirk.
Perrott was always available when not providing, resulting in him nipping over the home line twice in as many minutes before being replaced by Ciaran Wood as O’Connor rang the changes. Further tries for Wood (2), centre Murray Mitchell, Mills, and flanker Alex Dravitski merely underlined Grammar’s overall supremacy.
The four second half conversions were equally shared by Perrott and Mills.
Grammar will now play Kelso who were comfortable 40-5 winners at home to Kirkcaldy, although a trip to Poynder Park should hold no fears for O’Connor’s men, having beaten the Border side twice on league business, racking up 112 points in the process, not that the Grammar head coach will be taking anything for granted.
© Jack Nixon