Howe of Fife 19-19 GHK

Howe fullback Ben Mitchell dodges the GHK defenders. Pic by Chris Reekie.
Howe fullback Ben Mitchell dodges the GHK defenders. Pic by Chris Reekie.

Conditions could have been more unhospitable for the visit of GHK to Duffus Park as heavy rain dropped from the sky.

With 11 players injured or unavailable, impacting on front row availability, two emergency front row replacements were called on from St Andrews University.

GHK were first on the board from a try through their captain Hugh Parker which was converted by Danny Campbell.

Howe’s defence was far more resilient than the previous week and repelled GHK advances in an uncomfortable thirty minutes.

Before the break Howe registered their first try through centre Sean Murray but with the conversion missed, Howe entered the half time at 5-7 adrift.

Howe scored again through centre Murray, once more slicing through the defence, to score close to the posts for Sam Rowlands to convert.

Then, inevitably with a wet pitch and rain hammering down, a mistake from the visitors. The ball went to ground and Howe replacement Eden Cruickshank kicked through the loose ball for centre Murray to kick and chase the ball over the line, to dive onto it and complete his hattrick. Rowlands once more made the easy conversion.

The game swung back in favour of GHK when Lawrie was forced from the field of play with a rib injury. The resulting outcome, with no further front row replacements. meant uncontested scrums AND Howe losing their scrum advantage.

It was another GHK forward maul and drive which resulted in a second GHK try from Parker.

With the score finally balanced at 19-12 GHK winger Tony Lopez anticipateD a pass from Howe’s Murray and scored under the posts.

The conversion from Campbell complete.

Come the final whistle a draw may well have been a fair result given the conditions and the spate of injuries. Up next is a trip to Peebles.