Tag: #hillsrugby

Hills/Loch Lomond U13 Back on the Grass

After a couple of cancelled matches it was great to finally have our combined Hills/Loch Lomond U13 out on the grass for their first match of the year. Any cobwebs were soon cleared when playing three 15 minute sets against a hard tackling Strathaven.

Both teams brought 17 or 18 boys so our boys had their first experience of fifteens over the thirteen usually played at S1.

Our scrum was good and we saw Strathaven going backwards on more than one occasion. We had some good phases of play and an excellent try in the first period. The game became more broken in the latter periods and Strathaven played better as a team in coming up in a defensive line and their support play and rucking.

Our front pack individually were good and will come together even more as our fixtures continue. Our rucking was sometimes tentative leading to turn-overs and we probably need to get more tackling from the backs. Combining with Lomond is great for us and the boys are getting on well together and getting to know each other better.

This fixture was a repeat of one in November and on this occasion we were clearly more competitive.

Big thanks to referee Stella Kyalikunda

By Gary Gillespie, U13 Coach

2A’s Break 2018 Duck Against Dalziel

Hillhead Jordanhill 2A XV 17 – Dalziel 3XV 14

Saturday saw a strong Hills 2A’s side host Dalziel in repeat of the close November encounter which saw Hills overcome Dalziel 31-33 away. After the previous week’s fixture with Greenock postponed due to flooded pitch, Hughenden was fortunate to enjoy excellent playing conditions this time round.

In the opening exchanges of the game it was Dalziel who demonstrated a greater physicality and managed to keep ball tight to the pack to maintain the initial possession advantage. However it was Hills that looked more dangerous ball-in-hand with some great runs in open play from both wing-forwards and a feisty Fergus Denton at 8. The midfield partnership of Euan McMahon and Ben Chaddock had pretty lean ball in opening quarter but made some good carries and distributed well to a strong back line after an excellent break from scrum-half Dean Campbell Drummond sent Dalziel defense scrambling. Some quick hands off the ruck finally managed to connect a flying Andy Bolster who duly held his man to put William Murphy away in the corner for the first score of the game.

However Hills failed to capitalize on the score and after many punishing phases Dalziel had won their way to 5 meters out and took advantage with a pick and go to ground behind the Hills posts.

Hills appeared to be in the ascendancy again before the break and in the next phase of possession Tom Donaldson tried to capitalize on a stretched defense with a cross-field kick to wing which did not quite come off. With the score 7-5 in favour of Dalziel at the break, Hills needed to focus on providing a better platform to execute more attacking options and take advantage of our pace out wide.

The start of the second half mirrored the start of the game with Dalziel claiming opening set-pieces to find themselves winning a scrum from a knock-on 10 meters out. Hills had defended well the repeated charges of Dalziel’s pack. But a scything run from the Dalziel outhalf stretched the Hills midfield to expose a gap which allowed him to cut inside for an easy try which he duly converted (i.e. a mis-tackle in the back line allowed them to score after being bounced by our pack…).

In the next phases Hills re-grouped with the front row matching the Dalziel challenge in the scrum to work the home side inside the Dalziel half before Tom Donaldson punted a sharp and rangy grubber through a gap to force a line out behind the 22. Hills, now looking more urgent, presented multiple attacking options before Finlay McMillan crashed over the line off the back of a ruck 2m out. The conversion went through the posts to put Hills in close range with 12-14 to the guests.

The following period saw lean pickings for both sides with some broken play and steely defenses halting momentum. However this ended with an inspired and incisive try from Dean Campbell Drummond, aka Dynamite Dean, who exploited a very narrow but exposed blind side from 10 meters out. The kick stayed shy of the posts but put Hills ahead 17-14. The game closed with Dalziel throwing repeated charges down the slope to take back the score. Hills defended well and demonstrated good enough discipline to ensure there was not a point taken in the Dalziel challenge until the liberating final whistle.

Hills will now look to build on this first win of ‘18 for the 2A’s with solid defense, discipline and more confident handling as positive improvements over the last few difficult games.

This game also saw a beautiful and too rare event to go unnoticed, as Niall Houston* received his first senior front rower star. Congratulations to him!

Report: Stephen Cunniffe
Picture: Ian McLennagham

Hills P7 into the Lights at Scotstoun

The Hills P7 squad were recently lucky enough to be invited to a pre-match tournament on the 3G at Scotstoun, the glittering prize on offer was a chance for four of the eight teams to play on the pitch at half-time, with the runners-up providing a Guard of Honour as the professionals of the Glasgow Warriors and Toyota Cheetahs took to the pitch.

On a night which started clear and crisp, and swiftly became wet and windy; Hills set-out against their opening opponents. In a group containing Paisley, Howe of Fife and Dumfries, Paisley were first up.

With each game only lasting 7 minutes, and no set-piece or rucking (players simply had to release and get back onside after a tackle, all re-starts were taps) the stage was set for running rugby. Against Paisley, our good support lines and overall pace saw Hills run away with a well deserved victory. First game of the year, and first win.

Howe of Fife proved a much stronger opposition, and their accuracy, size, pace and support proved too much for Hills. Beautiful tackles were executed, and defensive lines were set, but unfortunately Howe always seemed to be able to offload out of the tackle to a runner coming at pace. In the end we were undone by some very good rugby.

On to a decider against Dumfries Saints. A win, or a draw in which we scored first, would see us under the bright lights at half-time. It was a very closely fought match; crunching tackles, silky side-steps, and quick ball abounded. A score at one end was followed swiftly by a score at the other, with two very different teams unable to squeeze an advantage. Ultimately, the referee blew for full-time with the score at 2 each; unfortunately the first of these had been scored by Dumfries and Hills had to settle for providing the Guard of Honour.

The group have done a lot of training over the winter, and these games were a good chance to practice our running lines and handling. The team did well, and we are all looking forward to our first full game away to Irvine on the 4th of March (where we will endeavour to get them to stand still long enough for a proper squad photo).

Report by Stewart Robison, P7 Coach

Deserved Bonus Point Win in Perth

Perthshire 11 pts Hillhead Jordanhill 38 pts

Never headed at any time in the game, Hills recorded their third away win of the season against Perthshire on the North Inch park by the handsome margin of five goals and one penalty goal to two penalty goals and one try. The only time that Perthshire threatened the Hills superiority was in the third quarter of the game when they came within six points of the visitors at seventeen points to eleven, but the Hills quickly re-engaged their higher gears to brush aside the hosts in the final quarter, Perthshire being overwhelmed and finishing the game with three players in the bin.

This was a fine team performance for most of the eighty minutes : the line out was more reliable with James Acheson being an able provider of ball : the scrummage won two tight head strikes and at times looked devastating, but could not quite maintain the intensity needed to be fully dominant ; and all the backs ran and handled the dry ball well with the power, pace and direction being supplied by Scott Halliday at 12 and Jimmy Griffith, a veritable wrecking ball, on the left wing. At the back. Rory Harte was his usual mercurial self, running with abandon and displaying a side step which mesmerised not only the opposition, but also at times his own teammates. Number 8 and captain, Owen Gemmell, was abrasive whenever he had the ball, and also sent the correct message to his opponents that he would not stand for any nonsense.

Hills scorers in the first half were Rory Harte with a typical meandering run through the home defense, touching down for his try between the posts ; Harte converted his own score. The second try of the afternoon owed everything to Jimmy Griffith’s anticipation and strength. Perthshire rather unwisely tried to run the ball out of their own twenty two, but unfortunately for their right winger he could not avoid his nemesis, Jimmy, who won the collision and the ball and then scampered unopposed some thirty metres to the line, stand-off Euan Brown converting the try. Early in the second half the Hills no. 10 kicked a penalty goal, but the next fifteen minutes were ceded to the hosts who threw everything at the Hills yet broke the visitors line only once. Normal service was soon restored with Alex Armstrong, Rory Harte and finally Jamie Maddox all touching down, Euan Brown successfully converting each of the three tries into the wind.

An emphatic victory was secured. There is then the fine prospect of the next game against league leaders. Newton Stewart, at Hughenden on Saturday the 3rd March with a 15.00 KO ; there is no game next Saturday the 24th February due to the Calcutta Cup game at Murrayfield. If the Hills can maintain the skills and attacking shape they showed at the North Inch and display more intensity at the set scrummage, there is every reason to look forward to a shock victory on the first Saturday in March.

Hills 1st XV:  Rory Harte. Jimmy Griffith, Arnaud Bauchet, Scott Halliday. Darren Knox (James Maddox), Euan Brown. Dan Williams. Mark Barrowman (Ross Jackson). Harry Perston, Maurice Adams (Ross Ferguson), James Acheson. Bill Kenny. Conor Fergusson. Owen Gemmell (C) Alex Armstrong (Scott McMillan) Subs all used .

Summer is Coming, and Tartan Touch at Hughenden

Hillhead Jordanhill RFC is very proud to have been selected as a new Tartan Touch Hub this season!
This summer, The Hills will host sessions at Hughenden of this very integrative and simplified non-contact version of Rugby. Minis, junior and senior players will all mix in, and welcome any new comers to the game and the club.

The rules are very easy and designed to maximise the fun around a rugby ball; please visit tartantouch.org for a preview.

More information will come following this announcement, stay tuned for details!

Hills 4XV Re-Born

Last Saturday, 6th of January, Hillhead Jordanhill lined up a 4th Men XV to answer Cartha’s Veterans invitation. A good range of Hills notorious players answered the call and dug out their boots for the occasion.

The match started at a frantic pace and, with only 3 minutes into the game, a perfectly weighted pass from David Paterson put Ally Jamieson through under the posts for a stunning first score. Cartha responded well and some great defensive tackling from Hills, notably Mark Orr, calmed the storm.

It was then a great 40 meters break from Mark Orr again which ended with Chris Tulloch running in from 20 yards for Hills second try. Shortly after that, Ally Jamieson added his second following a great break and pass from David Paterson. Mark Orr was then rewarded for his great yardage gains and tackles to finish a great Ally Jamieson break. Just before half time John Malakotey drove over for a deserved Cartha try, following an elegant play through the phases. Hills then lost Andrew Robinson on the half time whistle through a shoulder injury.

Following the break, Joe McCabe broke from halfway to go all the way under the post – he certainly enjoyed scoring against his club. The Jamieson Bros hatrick was completed following the best move of the match when Jimmy broke through three tackles to get across the white line. Hills were then pushed back on the defensive and following a great turnover Chris Tulloch launched a no-nonsense 40 yard spiral kick into touch deep into the Cartha half.
Cartha came storming back at Hills and great tackling from Murray Bell, Mark Orr and Paul Sheerin continued to keep them from threatening the line. However, Hills finally succumbed to a second try from John Malakotey.

Hills then came back at Cartha to ensure no comeback was on the cards. A driving maul led to Murray Bell breaking away from 15 yards out for the crucial try. The game continued to be an end to end spectacle in the sunshine and with Hills down to 14 men, Cartha scored the final try of the match. It was fitting that Cartha’s leader Andy Moran was the scorer.
The match was competitive till the end, best summed up by Paul Sheerin’s brilliant tackle on the final whistle.
Final score Hills 45, Cartha 17

After Saturday’s success our Veterans are aiming for a round robin fixture on the 3rd March 2018. Please contact Hector MacIntyre for details and join the squad.

Coaching, Pictures & Report: Hector MacIntyre

A Glorious Day for Minis Rugby

We welcomed not just spectacular sunshine and GHK to Hughenden on Sunday 11 November but also a good
contingent of Warriors players courtesy of HJRFC sponsors McCrea Financial Services. Despite Remembrance Sunday parades which had depleted both clubs, GHK brought strong squads from P2-3 upwards for a 1000 start in the bright sunshine.

The squads were then treated to some top notch coaching tips from the professional players – amazing how much more they listen to someone from the Warriors than Mums and Dads! Everyone got well and truly stuck in and at least one of the Warriors ended up on his back in the mud. Massive thanks to Leila, Ratu and Samuela for joining us and very special thanks to legendary Dougie Hall for the P6-7 tackling and scrum coaching!

After a well-observed minute’s silence, we got down to the serious part of the day, the games. Great to play under blue skies at this time of the year and each team gave a good account of itself some with more success than others but always in a very friendly environment (at least among the coaches) with all hostilities brought to an end by the final whistle. Special kudos to Italian international back row Samuela Vunisa for refereeing his first ever match without ever needing the TMO.

Afterwards, everyone enjoyed yummy pasta from on site restaurant Cafe Source Too along with cupcakes and sport bottles again courtesy of McCrea Financial Services.

Let’s hope we have some more days like that before the weather closes in!

Text by Alisdair Matheson
Pictures © Craig Watson / www.craigwatson.co.uk / @CraigWatsonpix

Mini Rugby Madness and Glasgow Warriors at Hughenden

HJRFC and McCrea FS are delighted to confirm that Glasgow Warriors players will be at Hughenden this Sunday!
As sponsors of Hillhead Jordanhill Minis, McCreas are delighted to support the Hills Minis vs GHK match on Sunday 12th November, 10.00am to 12.30pm, and host parents to a breakfast roll and a cuppa.
If you haven’t done so already, please confirm you will be with us with your young ruggers, either through the Hills Minis Teamer system or at minis-rugby@hjrfc.com
We very much look forward to welcoming you to a marvellous morning of Mini Madness this Sunday!

Hills 2XV Take Down Dalziel Counterparts

On a sunny autumnal day, Hills 2nd XV dazzled Dalziel to come away with a 62 – 5 bonus point win. This win comes on the back of two disappointing losses but is the result of persistence in training. Frustrations have been evident in coaches Dougie and Stuart who see the potential in all reserve players, but finally hard work on handling drills has paid off.

The conditions were perfect at Jordanhill High School and for a number of the team this was a return to an old haunt. The match provided great entertainment with 10 tries consisting of a Hat-trick from Bourrel and first Hills tries for Smillie and Thompson. Similar targets set by the 1st XV were used for the 2nd XV and certainly the number of phases and number of attacks crossing the gain line were much higher than in recent weeks. The management of backs by Donaldson along with the changing angles and finding of gaps by centres Franklin and Mayes troubled Dalziel from start to finish.

Scoring started very early in the game with a first line break and collective finish. It was then the first Hills score for Smillie from a No.8 pick from a scrum close to Dalziel’s line, quick ball started the second phase to a waiting Donaldson who quickly passed onto Smillie who cut a great angle to break through the line to get between the uprights. The third try was touched down after a great forwards line out and release by Donaldson at 10 to Franklin who broke the attempted tackles from Dalziel centres. Hills fourth was Bourel’s first of the afternoon, an overthrown lineout gathered by Gillie, offloaded to Bourrel to crash through a challenging defence. Hills confidence was shining through, the forwards were punishing a soft Dalziel pack in the scrum as well contending well at every line out. Hills fifth try was very much a team try, the phase started within the Hills 22, good hands and running saw Franklin make a break running from to their 22 before facing a one on one with Dalziel fullback, a loose pass was made to Johnston who stretched out to catch above his head before gathering securely and headed straight for the line to touch down. Dalziel did manage to score one try as they capitalised on Hills not securing fringes while defending a maul after a lineout, Dalziel’s large pack was consuming defenders and their number 12 broke off on the blindside for a speedy sprint to the line. Mayes and Bourrel both crossed the line for tries six and seven before substitute Plunkett made it eight by stretching out to touch the ball right on the line. Try nine came after a lineout was picked up by McGoldrick to link with Franklin to off load to Thompson to cross the line. The final try was to be scored by Bourel to make it his hat-trick for the game.

Hills certainly played their game and at a speed that Dalziel could not keep up with. However, Hills were their own worst enemy at times giving away over 15 penalties, most of which were for coming in from the side and being offside. The defence was strong with many double tackles stopping Dalziel in their tracks. Handling and communication had improved greatly from recent weeks and with displays like this, there is no reason why Hills 2nd XV can’t climb the league table. There will be a well-earned break in matches but the squad will return to play away to Hamilton 3rd XV on Saturday 2nd December 2017.

Hills 2nd XV: Dale Coghill; Callum Kettles; Blair MacKenzie; Loïs Legendre; Charlie Smillie; Fraser Gillie; Steven Kay; Hélian Bourrel; Gaëtan Boyer; Tom Donaldson; Conor Thompson; Jamie Franklin; Ruaridh Mayes; Blair Johnston; Graham Davidson; Adam Plunkett; Preston McGoldrick; Tom Primrose; Johnny Kinniburgh.

Report & Picture by Martin Malone

Hills Continue Their Progress

Hillhead/Jordanhill 31 points Ardrossan Accies 19 points

By defeating their visitors, Ardrossan Accies by two goals, one try and four penalty goals to two goals and one try, Hills continued their steady progress of late in recording their fifth National league victory in six games, prior to the close down for the Autumnal Internationals. Yet the opening to the game did little for the nervous dispositions of the home support, such was the visitors attacking flair that they rattled on two tries before Hills awoke in the pleasant late autumnal sunshine that had temporarily sent them to sleep. Stand off, Rory Finn Harte, was the home catalyst, energising his colleagues with his vision and his range of kicking skills. The first try came from his well placed up and under to the visitors’ twenty two. Such was the power of follow up from James Reekie, revelling in his new role as blind side flanker, that the ball broke loose to be snapped up by centre Euan Brown who crossed the line unopposed to touch down. He converted his own try and that was Hills up and running for the next twenty five minutes when they dominated possession and territory. Their second try was a Harte trademark, a high hanging kick to the open side wing where Jimmy Griffith controlled the ball well to flop over the line ; Brown converted this one immaculately from the right hand touchline. The third try began deep in the Hills twenty two with Brown breaking quickly. Good driving play from captain Owen Gemmell, continued by the hard working second rower, Bill Kenny, a constant source of danger with ball in hand, produced well won breakdown ball. The forward momentum was continued by the flying left winger, Ciaran Callaghan, who ran hard for the line. Another series of rucks rewarded James Reekie with a close range try. Euan Brown finished off the first half scoring with a well struck penalty goal and Hills had added twenty two unanswered points in a thirty minute dominant spell.

Many in the home support thought that Hills, now kicking down the slope to the Gartneval end of the ground, would extend their lead easily, but their Ayrshire visitors had other ideas. Although home wingers Jimmy Griffith and Ciaran Callaghan continued to ring alarm bells in the Ardrossan defence each time they had the ball, Hills, try as hard as they might, did not cross the line again, such was the determination of the Ayrshire defence. But there were chances particularly when Bill Kenny had the ball twice in open space, but no support runners could reach him and the attacks fizzled out. Hills relied for scoreboard progress on the unerring right boot of Euan Brown, who kicked three second half penalty goals to take his personal tally to nineteen points for his afternoon’s work. Ardrossan to their credit did come back into with a well worked try from their open field runners which was converted, but brave HiIls defence in the last ten minutes of the game stopped them for adding to their score, and closed them out from gaining a losing bonus point.

This was a well contested club game between two well prepared sides who gave their all in a very open fixture. There is only one game during the next three weeks of the autumn Internationals. Hills entertain St. Boswells in the second round of the BT National Cup at Hughenden on FRIDAY the 17th November with a 20.00 KO.

Hills 1st XV: Craig Colvin, Jimmy Griffith (Scott McMillan), Scott Halliday,Euan Brown, Ciaran Callaghan, Rory Harte, Dan Williams, Mark Barrowman, Harry Perston (Harry Singh), Maurice Adams (Ross Fergusson), Bill Kenny, Chris Warnock, James Reekie, Conor Ferguson (Ryan Reilly), Owen Gemmell (C) Subs all used.

Report: Bernie Mitchell
Pictures: Hamish Adamson