Ayr Rugby Football Club

Ayr made it four-from-four on Saturday when they pulled off a scintillating road win against Heriots in a top-of-the-table clash.

A perfect start to the fixture put Ayr in the driving seat but it was all to play for at the end game, with Heriots' rallying back in the second half. A decisive score from Frazier Climo with two minutes to play concluded the fixture at 24-32.

The sun was gleaming on Goldenacre at 15.00 on Saturday and Ayr asserted their authority straight from the off. A masterful kick-off hung in the air for the leaping Kyle Rowe to win back. It took them just three minutes to convert a penalty and just four to get their first try. Kyle Rowe was able to carve through Heriots' defensive line and march home. The conversion slipped wide.

During the opening period of the game the home side didn't get a sniff of the ball and Ayr were revelling in possession. Purposeful attacking orchestrated by Frazier Climo was creating- then exploiting- gaps in the defence. After just ten minutes of play another penalty to Ayr put them up 0-11.

Heriots had a rare glimmer of possession following the score and looked destined to get on the board when Andrew Simmers sniped clear from a ruck. He was almost home and dry before skipper Peter McCallum, on his return to action, managed to pull him to the deck and force a turnover.

The home side attacked again but couldn't shrug a belligerent Ayr wall. Frustrated, their second row Adam Sinclair was sent to the bench for reacting poorly to an on-field scuffle. 

Ayr pounced almost immediately. The bullish Steven Longwell was quickly pinned for a double-movement on the try line but with play brought back for a penalty advantage the tight-head went straight back and was deemed successful at second serving. Climo's conversion made it 0-18 and all of a sudden Heriots had a mountain to climb. 

With the intermission looming Heriots managed to get going and a penalty on the stroke of half-time gave them a glimmer of hope to take into the dressing room.

Half-time: Heriots 3-18 Ayr.

Heriots are title contenders for a reason and Peter Murchie's men were under no illusion the game was dead and buried. They came out of the break sharper than Ayr and managed to grab their first try of the game within 90 seconds. Craig Robertson beautifully weaved through some illusive tackles and under the posts. Jones' conversion made it 10-18.

Before Ayr could get a chance to breathe they were back in their 22 defending once more. A once sluggish Heriots' side was now firing from all cylinders and attacking with poise and intent. On the 50-minute mark an audacious passage of play was rewarded with another try for the home side.

Whipped wide, Heriots were flirting with a score on the wing before a looping offload back inside landed in the hands of Andrew Simmers who ran in. The successful conversion meant Ayr's comfortable lead had been slashed to a singular point. 

Momentum in the game had changed and Ayr knew they needed to react before the contest pulled away from them. With twenty to play their moment came in the shape of Kyle Rowe- who else?

A loose ball in the ruck fell to Steven Longwell who fed Stafford McDowall who in favour fed Paddy Kelly to launch a counter-attack. The Glasgow Warrior pushed forward and found Kyle Rowe cutting back inside. Rowe managed to step past his opposite number and smoke the covering full-back to give Ayr a needed cushion. Climo's conversion made it 17-25. 

Almost instantly Heriots reacted. A crafty chip onto Ayr's try line was poorly dealt with and fell perfectly into the hands of the fortune Dougie Steele. The conversion cut the home side's deficit back to one and forced a nervy final ten minutes.

The last score came with just two to play. In true poetic fashion, it was the man who kick-started Ayr's storming performance who provided the decisive dagger. After a long period of building phases Frazier Climo latched onto an offload five metres out and had an easy run in to seal victory.

Full-time: Heriots 24-32 Ayr RFC.

The second XV were also in action at Goldenacre on Saturday, falling 31-19 to Heriots 2s. Back-rower Wolf Van Dijk was named MOTM.

Ayr return to action this weekend when they welcome Melrose to Millbrae. Kick-off is at 3pm and with both sides finalists in the last two BT Premiership campaigns (with one win a-piece) the game is set to be a nail-biter.