THE SRU has pledged to support Hawick YM “in any way possible” after the Redskins withdrew from the RBS Border Cup.
The Mansfield Haugh outfit were due to clash swords with Hawick in Saturday’s cup tie, but the decision was taken to pull out of the competition due to a shortage of players, and concerns over the current squad’s inexperience and ability to compete against Premer One teams.
The YM have endured a difficult season so far in RBS Championship Division B, with only one win to date, and several heavy defeats to their name.
They’re also having to field a side comprising mainly 18 and 19-year-olds, most of whom have limited playing time under their belts.
YM skipper Steven Mabon said following the announcement: “I’m completely gutted for the boys as we were really looking forward to playing in the competition, but we all know the outcome is in the best interests of the club and the young boys we have here.”
President Ronnie Frost told the Hawick News: “We just have too many young lads here and to ask them to go up against boys in Premier one is not fair.
“We asked the squad if they felt Saturday was a good idea and if we should stay in the competition and few were keen to stay.”
Frost continued: “We are hoping to enter the competition next season provided the model we put in place brings in enough boys to be competitive.
“We are not helping anyone by saying we are good to go but then have to come back and say actually we don’t have a front row or we only have 13 players.”
Although disappointed, Mabon added: “The team is gutted about not getting to play against the Hawick boys but we all know it is for the best.
“We are such a young side and it does not do anyone any good when we are being humped by 80 points every game.”
“Our focus is now the league and putting in team performances we are proud of. These lads are great here and if it all goes to plan then there is no question we can improve.”
The SRU issued the following statement: “Scottish Rugby havebeen informed that the Hawick YM committee have made the decision to withdraw from the RBS Borders Regional Cup due to issues with player numbers and would like to assure the club that we will support them in any way possible going forward.”