HAWICK SERVED CURRIE TO START

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Hawick RFC’s BT Premiership fixture schedule for the 2017-18 season has been revealed.

After retaining their Premiership status by the skin of their teeth last season, Hawick hope the 2017/18 campaign can bring a return to the glory days of Greens rugby.

The Mansfield Park outfit will open the season with a visit from Currie, who have rebranded to play under the new name Currie Chieftains, on Saturday, September 2.

Last season’s runners-up, Melrose, host Watsonians, Heriot’s welcome Stirling County, champions Ayr visit Meggetland to take on Boroughmuir, while new boys Marr head to Old Anniesland to take on Glasgow Hawks.

The SRU announced the fixture schedule for the premiership and BT National leagues this week with very little changes to the overall structure of the four divisions other than the implementation of five league weekends following New Year as opposed to last season’s four.

The addition of one extra weekend after New Year is aimed at alleviating concerns about the lack of continuity, meaningful fixtures and adequate rest for players.

The opening round fixtures of the BT Cup were also announced this week, with big changes to Scotland’s flagship cup competition.

The format has been altered to a 16-team straight knockout tournament, rather than a 46-team knockout that included the Premiership and all three National divisions, featuring last season’s ten premiership clubs and the top six from national one.

Hawick have been drawn at home to Selkirk. Ties to be played on November 18.