Understrength Linden take a battering at Dalkeith

Dalkeith 104

Hawick Linden 13

In their first League game since the end of November, Linden travelled to Dalkeith with a horrendous list of injuries and unavailability.

Up against a bigger and slicker home team, the visitors were blown away and slumped to a huge defeat as Dalkeith hit the hundred-mark with the last play of Saturday’s BT East Regional Division 1 encounter.

The hosts struck early with a converted try in the second minute. However, following a good Linden scrum, Jordan White won a penalty at the subsequent breakdown which Kirk Ford stroked over from distance.

A wild pass at a Linden defensive scrum then gifted an easy touchdown to Dalkeith, but once more Ford responded with a penalty goal.

From 14-6 down, the Kings Park side took hold of the game, scoring five tries, four converted, to pull away to 47-6.

Despite the deficit, Linden showed great spirit and, from a scrum deep in their own half, worked their way into opposition territory. Following a couple of penalties, one of which saw a Dalkeith player yellow carded, Liam Sharkey plunged over at the posts, with Ford converting.

However, the home team had the final say of the half to touch down to put themselves 52-13 ahead at the interval.

The second period was pretty much one-way traffic. The Royal Blues refused to fold, though, and had a good period of pressure as the game went into the final ten minutes. But a dropped pass was ruthlessly capitalized on with a try at the other end.

Three home touchdowns in the final five minutes completed the scoring on a dispiriting day for Linden.

In spite of the scoreline the predominantly young team battled hard and even had the squeeze on at scrum time, particularly in the first half. All deserve credit for their efforts and, although a hard result to stomach for those taking part, it perhaps wasn’t so much about the players who were there, but those who weren’t.