Stirling clash ‘a massive game’

Hawick are celebrating not just victories over local rivals Melrose and Gala in consecutive weeks but an exciting era of resurgence, writes Alexander McLeman.

For Nikki Walker’s ambitious Premiership men the days of battling to stay in the division seem a distant memory. This season, year two of Walker’s tenure, after stuttering out of the blocks, the club are now occupying one of the important play-off places and look like they belong there.

The Robbie Dyes travel to Stirling County, this afternoon, with the aim of closing the gap on those above them, while throwing down the gauntlet to the chasing pack.

“Saturday’s a massive game. I know it is a cliché but it’s because if we go up to Stirling and don’t perform then all that hard work put in against Melrose and Gala will be for nothing,” said Hawick winger Craig Russell.

“After the wins over Melrose and Gala our main focus now is keeping that going, accumulating as many points as we can and putting distance between ourselves and the chasing pack.

“We want to throw down the gauntlet to the teams below us. Make them understand that if they want to overtake us they’re going to have to match us win for
win.”

Russell added: “Yes, there will be a little bit less emotion this weekend because it’s not a Borders rival we’re playing but we can’t let our performances slip.

“We have a top two place targeted so only victory on Saturday will do.”