Sunday saw Mackie P4s make the long trip south to Stirling, where unlike previous visits the weather stayed dry!
Mackie were in a 5-team pool against strong sides from all over Scotland. Due to the uneven numbers Mackie’s first, and as it turned out, key game was against a Stirling side which had already played a fixture.
Mackie as they traditionally do, started off slowly against well drilled opposition and were always playing catch up. They closed the gap to two tries to one but were unsettled by injries to three players which caused a lot of reshuffling. Mackie kept pressing but were undone by a couple of late breakaway tries.
After a quick re-group Mackie took the field against Marr from Ayrshire. No slow start this time as Mackie smashed into the first tackles, rucked over the ball and scored all in the first 30 seconds! The level of play was now much higher, tackles were strong, rucking which had been weak in the first game was much improved and the ball was run with purpose. Marr to their credit kept up the fight but there was only one winner Mackie 5 Marr 2.
Having had a longer break Mackie now came up against Biggar from the Borders. A few players were swapped but the performance and result were the same. Mackie launched into tackles and used the possession won effectively, passing the ball before the tackle and supporting each other. Simlar game, similar result Mackie 5 Biggar 2.
The last group game was against a spirited but outclassed Dunfermline side. Mackie were really putting their game together now with players queueing up to make tackles, counter rucking strongly, and running switches and loops on their possession. It was a complete team performance as Dunfermline were demolished 7-2.
Unfortunately the tournament rules only allowed for the winners of each group to play in a final rather than the more usual top two in each group to play semi finals so Mackie’s tournament was over. This was a real shame as we improved all day and would have been a handful for anyone if allowed to progress. The team were commended by other coaches and the referee for both their ability and attitude, so congratulations go to all for a great performance.
The Mackie P4 Squad pictured were Iain, Owen, Jonathan, Jacob, Calum, Kieran, Lachlan, Duncan, Harris and Andrew.