Linden denied final say as Berwick scoop sevens title

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HAWICK Linden lost out in the final of their inaugural sevens tournament as Berwick claimed the Life Members Cup last Saturday.

And it could now become a regular fixture on the calendar.

Royal Blues president Rob Black said this week: “It went really well and all the teams who participated seemed to enjoy themselves.

“This is the first year that I’ve been involved when the league’s finished on time, but if we could have it again I’m sure we would.”

In their pool matches, the Linden disposed of Kelso (17-14) with tries from Nathan Murray (2) and a converted score by Barry Sutherland. Craig Russell grabbed a brace of converted tries, Sutherland a trio and Murray one as they swept aside Penicuik 40-5. And Russell (2) and Murray (2) were on form in the 26-19 win over North Berwick, with Sutherland sending over two conversions.

In the other pool, Hawick Harlequins suffered a 22-32 defeat to Selkirk, but recovered to beat Annan 36-26 before ultimately losing out to Berwick by 40 points to seven, with the latter side booking their place in the final with further wins over Annan and Selkirk.

In the final, Berwick scored first after breaking out from their own half to take a seven-point advantage.

The Linden replied with a fine run by Russell on to Murray who sent Greg Thomson in at the posts and Sutherland converted.

Berwick replied with an unconverted try, but pressure

on the seasiders’ line saw Murray dance over for the score.

With the Linden looking like going ahead and camped on the Berwick line, possession was lost and the Berwick scrum-half ran the length of the field to score.

The conversion was added and this had a big bearing on the game as the Linden looked a bit down after looking like taking the lead.

And in turn the score

appeared to work wonders for Berwick’s confidence.

After the turnaround Berwick gained the upper hand and some slack Linden tackling allowed them to score two more tries, one converted.

A solo effort from his own half by Russell and a galloping run by Graeme Colville brought the the Volunteer Park men back into the game, but it wasn’t not enough as time ran out.

President’s wife Moira Black presented the cup to the Berwick captain and also

the player of the tournament award, which she had donated herself, to Linden’s Craig

Russell for an outstanding display.

Mr Black added: “We’d like to thank everybody for their contributions on the day and to all our sponsors for helping to make the event possible.”