Memories made during triumphant weekend at Duffus Park

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Friday evening saw an emotional, yet a hugely enjoyable, celebration of one of Howe’s most likeable past captains, Alan ‘Smooth’ Booth.

A charity match organised by the family took centre stage on a packed Duffus Park where over 80 past and present players graced the pitch. Off the park it is unlikely the ground will have seen a mass of spectators on such a scale.

The two coaches, Ian Rankin and Chris Reekie, were kept busy ensuring everyone managed time on the pitch, which included two former Scottish internationals and ex-Howe players, Chris Fusaro and Fergus Thomson.

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Watching from the stand was current international George Horne. Reekie’s blue team had the edge over the experienced Rankin’s reds, by 46 points to 22. More importantly over £5000 was raised to be split between Cancer Research UK, Maggies Centre and Tarvit Ward at Adamson Hospital.

Eden Cruickshank attacks for Howe against GHA. Pic by Chris Reekie PhotographyEden Cruickshank attacks for Howe against GHA. Pic by Chris Reekie Photography
Eden Cruickshank attacks for Howe against GHA. Pic by Chris Reekie Photography

On Saturday, the Duffus was again a hive of activity with 14 men’s and eight women’s teams competing for various trophies. The day started at 11.30am, culminating in the finals at 6pm. Before the finals an exhibition by the Howe Clan, a mixed ability rugby side, providing those with disability to play the game, treated the spectators to a great match, alongside current players.

The Ferrier Cup for those knocked out in the first round was won by The Seabass Select, beating Hillfoots 32-7. The Cordelia Manson Trophy was won by RP7s against Howe Saints 36-0. In a tense and thrilling final for the J R Gray Trophy, with the Howe cheered on by the large crowd, narrowly lost out to Scottish Premiership side GHA 15-7. All medals and trophies were handed over by Terry Turpie and Gavin Robertson of sponsors ‘The Painted Kitchen’.

Three youth teams from the Howe travelled to Aberdeen for the Saltire Energy Caledonia Cup finals day. 30 teams, 24 boys and six girls, from across the Caledonia region, competed following a series of national leagues, then cup, shield and bowl knockout rounds.

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Howe/Bell Baxter were represented by under-15s, under-16s and under-18s age group teams. The under-15s beat Perthshire 28-4. The under-16s came back from 19-0 down to score 57 points with no response to win their final. The under-18s beat Aberdeen Wanderers 12-5.