Ayr Rugby Football Club

An Ayr side full of youngsters and debutants impressed on Saturday when they defeated Hawick 42-7 at Millbrae. A game which started neck-in-neck saw Ayr grow into form, with the result well wrapped up early in the second half. 

In the end it was another bonus-point victory for Ayr, with Hawick's premiership woes continuing. 

Straight from the get-go it was clear the weather was going to plague proceedings with Lee Armstrong's kick-off getting held up in the wind and failing to travel ten metres. From the resulting scrum Ayr were able to launch their first attack of the game with Stafford McDowall pulling off an audacious chip for Kyle Rowe, however wet conditions underfoot didn't provide the bounce needed to catch the charging Rowe. 

Rowe was up to his usual tricks and was back on the ball moments later but once again weather conditions betrayed him as he slipped into contact.

One facet of Ayr's game that was looking sharp early-on was the line-out with Hooker Alex McGuire and lock Cam Reece- both on their first starts for the club- linking up expertly. They were joined by other full-debutant Alfie North and the trio didn't look phased by the challenge of Premiership rugby. 

First blood came on the tenth minute when another successful line-out launched a devastating rolling maul. A crowd of bodies bundled over the line and Gregor Henry was the man who rose with the ball in hand. Climo made no mistake with the touchline conversion.

The conditions may well have been chilling but action on the pitch was beginning to heat up with Hawick's trademark fierce pack doing whatever they could to muscle their way over the gain line. Bruce McNeil was the man at the heart of everything using both his towering stature and mastering of the dark arts to rattle a well drilled Ayr defence. 

On the 25th minute Hawick got what they were looking for when centre Andrew Mitchell took full advantage of a well work set-play. He pranced through the middle of the park and managed to win the footrace to the try-line. Lee Anderson tied up the scoring. 

The score sent a shudder through the Millbrae stand and for some time it looked like it could be a tense affair, but the try stood as Hawick's only score in the contest.

From then-on-in it was a masterclass from the home side.

The first moment of magic came just three minutes later. A charged down clearance looked to be heading out when 18-year-old Ollie Smith conjured up a beautiful one-handed pick up whilst roaring down the touchline. He managed to draw the last defender before feeding Kyle Rowe who could have finished it off but shipped to the supporting McDowall instead. Climo's conversion made it 14-7.

Straight from the restart Ayr marched back down the pitch and grabbed a score courtesy of Robbie Nairn. The Warrior pounced off of his wing and charged through the middle of the pitch bouncing off straggling tacklers. He looked to have finally been brought down but the fullback couldn't hold on and Nairn was able to pump his legs and find the line. Climo's conversion meant that a half of rugby which looked like going either way now concluded at 21-7.

Ayr didn't cool-off during the break. Frazier Climo- whose masterful kicking was dictating where the game was played- opted to run and breezed through an illusive tackle and up the field. He found the charging Steven Longwell on his outside shoulder but the rampaging tight-head was brought down just short. From the next phase Ayr shipped wide and found Corbenici who shrugged off his man and dotted down. Once again Climo was able to split the uprights from out wide.

Hawick did manage to keep Ayr out for eighteen minutes down the stretch but were only postponing the inevitable. With ten to play Stafford McDowall punished slack defence with a beautiful solo try. Not one, not two but three tacklers were found wanting when he weaved through out wide. Climo continued with his rich vein of form on the kicking tee and increased the lead to 28 points. 

Ayr were out of sight and in cruise control, but just as the clock entered it's dying embers the home side had one more roll of the dice and incredibly struck doubles. Whilst his back was to the try-line, Climo hoisted a kick over to the wing. The ball didn't find a pair of hands but was hacked on by Grant Anderson, who was able to out-pace the covering defender and dive over the try line. Climo's sixth conversion out-of-six concluded the scoring at 42-7.

Ollie Smith was named Slater Menswear Man of the Match.

The second XV were down to play Hawick but couldn't escape the fate of Storm Callum, with the pitch deemed unsafe.