Cottrell remains bullish on Hawick’s outlook ahead of Melrose clash

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HAWICK skipper Greg Cottrell says Melrose are “there for the taking” in tomorrow’s RBS Premiership match.

The Greens have already been beaten twice this season by The Greenyards outfit, but the recent cup clash between the two sides, which saw Hawick outplaying Melrose in the second half before succumbing to a 30 points to 20 defeat, has given rise to a degree of optimism in the Hawick camp.

Cottrell told the Hawick News: “Melrose are the type of team who can hurt you from anywhere on the pitch. They have quality from one to 15, which is why they are challenging for the Premiership this season.

“But if we play the way we have been playing recently and cut down on our mistakes then we can give them a good game.

He continued: “If you look at the sides who have beaten ’Rose this season we have faced up pretty well against them and, to be honest, they are there for the taking this weekend for sure.

“Penalties are the big thing for us, though, and if we can cut back on them we have a great chance of winning.”

Cottrell went on: “Any team is beatable, look at how Currie fared against Ayr a few weeks back, and our second-half performance against them [Melrose] in the cup showed that we can face the top sides and have a chance of beating them.”

Melrose have had a couple weeks to prepare for the visit of the Greens as their Borders Cup match at Hawick YM on Saturday was called off due to the home side being unable to field a front row, while Hawick kept themselves in the winning groove with an impressive six-try victory over Jed-Forest last Friday night, to add to their triumph over Edinburgh Accies the previous
week.

Cottrell said: “It’s a good thing they haven’t played in a while as we take our wins over Accies and Jed into the game. Playing week-in week-out is crucial to racking up wins as confidence and momentum are so important.”