Tuesday, 10 April 2018

West League Update - West 3 - 09 April 2018

There were a number of choices, but for us the game of last weekend took place at Holmpark where the two main title challengers in the West 3 championship battle faced each other, with 2nd placed Bishopton welcoming league leaders Wigtownshire.

Both teams have scored plenty of points though the season and possess defences which have been pretty mean (Shire having only conceded 74 points in 13 league games).  So as with most of the season, we donned our hat, gloves and waterproofs and made the trip to Bishopton, and sure enough, it was a typical dull and dreich day for league rugby.

The pitch looked soft in places, but this along with the weather, didn’t stop either team from serving up an entertaining game.  First half, Bishopton probably had the lion share of possession and territory, but it was Shire who made the most of their chances, scoring three tries with the home teams only points coming from an early penalty.  Bishopton however did have a try disallowed for a double movement and had a penalty come off the post.  Despite the high level of pressure from Bish, the Wigtownshire defence was solid and it was they who lead 19-3 at half time - probably not a fair reflection of the game so far.

With Shire playing down the slope second half, it was they who piled on the attacking pressure, and a couple of quick tries for the visitors meant the game quickly got away from Bishopton.  Bishopton never gave up the fight, but they just couldn’t find a way through, round or over the Shire defence.

At the end, it was a big 62-3 win that puts Shire 16 points ahead of Bishopton, with Bishopton only having three game remaining.

The other league contenders, Glasgow Uni Medics, lost 21-7 on their trip to Cowal which leaves them 18 points behind Shire.  The Medics have four games left to play, but they have still to receive a points deductions for last weekends unfulfilled game at Mull.  The Medics have already had three points docked, so it should be at least this again, so by our reckoning, Wigtownshire won the West 3 Championship on Saturday.

Understandably, Wigtownshire are holding off on celebrations until things are confirmed, and that may come on Saturday as they welcome the Medics to London Road.  We’ve not seen The Medics play this season, but based on Shires performance on Saturday, they’ll be up against it, as the Shire defence is solid whilst they have a dominant pack with a number of willing runners off the back of the breakdown and in midfield.  This team should do well in West 2 next season.

With Wigtownshire Champions in waiting, we now turn an eye to who takes the second promotion spot.

A further points deduction for the Medics makes Bishopton slight favourites for going up to West 2.  Bishopton have Lochaber away this weekend, and a trip to Mull on 28th April, before their final league game against the Medics - so no easy games.  The Medics have a toughie against Wigtownshire this weekend, before hosting Moffat at home next week.  Following the game against Bishopton on 12th May, they’ve got their visit to Mull. It looks like being a good run-in for the West 2 place, which could go right down to the wire.

The weekends other West 3 result saw Hyndland draw 10 each against Shawlands, which pushes Shawlands to 10 points ahead of Lochaber in the battle for fourth, but Lochaber do have a game in hand.  Shawlands are away at Mull this weekend, with their final game on 5th May when they welcome Cowal. Lochaber welcome Bishopton this weekend, with their final two games away at Cowal and then Moffat.

The Mull v Moffat game was scheduled for Saturday but was off due to transport issues for Moffat.

West 1 Update
West 2 Update

Flickr Albums:
West 1
West 2
West 3

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