Hawick coach Nikki Walker described the 39-20 win over Tynedale as “vital” as the club gears up for the start of the BT Premiership campaign at the end of the month, writes Alexander McLeman.
Walker began his reign as the new Greens head coach with a laboured display against an experienced Tynedale side at Mansfield Park on Saturday, but he insisted that performances will improve once players get more games under their belt and regain match fitness following the summer break.
He told the Hawick News: “Overall, as a first game of the season, it was a good run-out for the boys against good opposition. They made it hard for us in large sections of the game and it really took us until 15 minutes to go before we took the game away from them.
“We’re still building towards the new season, so there will be issues and certain things we will change before we take on Currie [on August 30], but it was vital to start with a win and I’m pleased that we stuck to our plan.”
Hawick vice-captain Bruce McNeil added: “The scoreline flattered us slightly as they played well and had us staring down the barrel, but we stuck at it and in the second half we did well and managed to run away with it in the end.
“Tynedale are a good side, they have a few boys who train full-time with Newcastle Falcons so they didn’t lack quality.
“I think the main positive from the game was that after going in at half-time down by three tries we managed to talk it over and make those improvements to get the victory.”