Thursday, 17 May 2018

West League Update - West 2 - 17th May 2018

It was a massive weekend for West Region Rugby with two of the three championship titles up for grabs.

In West 2, Strathendrick could claim the title at Loch Lomond with a win, though anything less and it would probably go to the last set of games of the season.

It was a gorgeous afternoon at Dillichip, and despite the midweek rain that led to the postponement of Wednesday nights game between Lomond and Millbrae, the pitch was in pretty good nick, though there were still a few soft patches.

Loch Lomond may have flirted with the relegation battle only a few weeks ago, but they certainly weren’t overawed by their visitors.  A willingness to take the game to Endrick with plenty of action up front in the forwards, and not shy run the ball back when they had the chance.

For big parts of the game there wasn’t a great deal between the two Clubs, but when Endrick decided to play a quicker, offloading game and move the ball wide they looked dangerous.  At the final whistle Endrick had claimed the victory 31-3, and with it the West 2 Championship title. (Video - Celebration time)

Cumnock had already guaranteed promotion the week earlier and did what they had to do to keep the pressure on Strathendrick with a 47-5 win away at Birkmyre.  However the Endrick win means they have to settle for second.

It’s been a great contest at the top of West 2, though the final table will show both Strathendrick and Cumnock comfortably ahead of their nearest challengers Lenzie and Paisley.  This does not however fully reflect how tight it's been this season, where it has been nip & tuck right from the off

In the relegation fight, WD had the weekend off, so a win for Millbrae would have confirmed that WD would be playing West 3 next season.  A 32-27 victory for Clydebank, yielded Millbrae a couple of bonus points, leaving them 9 ahead of WD.  WD still had two games to play, so could avoid relegation with a couple of bonus point wins.

The first of WDs two remaining games was due on Wednesday evening at Millbrae.  The SRU results page is today showing this as postponed, with a reason of “Waysiders failed to fulfil Short of players.”

With no game played, WD are now probably out of time for this game as the season closes on Monday.

So far this season, WD have had 12 points deducted, so there may be further repercussions for them if they did again fail to field a team.

West 2 has been highly competitive, where even at the halfway point in the season we had seven Clubs separated by nine points at the top, and only 11 points between four Clubs fighting it out for the second relegation spot.  It’s really only Birkmyre who have had little to play for this season.

If Clubs can keep their squads together, then next season should again be highly competitive.  The two Clubs coming up from West 3 will fancy their chances against any of the current West 2 opposition.  Helensburgh are coming down from West 1, but they look as though they have some rebuilding to do.  The second Club down down from West 1 looks to be Oban - they’ve had a bit of a mixed season, but with five wins from 19 games, they’ll fancy they can do a job in West 2.

West 1 Update
West 3 Update (to follow)

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