With term not starting until 27 January, to be able to field a team in our RBS Caledonia League is quite a task but with the focus and dedication of the players based in Scotland, Saints were able to send 17 club players up north to Aberdeen to take on Gordonians RFC on Saturday.
Having not played since early December it was no wonder that the boys from the ol grey toon were quite rusty and it was their defence that let them down with too many missed tackles during the game allowing a good Gordonians side to break the line and score. The home team raced into an early lead but Saints fought back valiantly with some outstanding attacking play and were unlucky not to score on a couple of occasions.
Saints focused on enjoying the game and ‘having a go’ which they did running the ball from everywhere and not wanting to kick the ball to touch and as a result the game was open with great attacking play from both teams. Captain Jack Hannay was the catalyst for great Saints play ,standing out as the best player on the pitch with his passion and commitment in every situation which brought a score for Sean Murchie in the second half before scoring himself after a period of sustained pressure. Gordonians had too much for the Saints however and scored three breakaway tries when Saints were in the home sides 22 and a bounce of a ball and two interceptions allowed three tries that flattered the home team.
The game finished 50-14 to Gordonians but the key outcome for University of St Andrews was that we did not have any injuries from the game. The club has two more fixtures before term begins and the main focus for the players is the chance to go on and win a BUCS title in February. Three games stand between them and a first Scottish Championship title in over 15years. That is where the priorities lie for the club and when all players return for term, work begins to ensure they achieve that goal. Tough away trips to first Aberdeen then Dundee will decide the outcome of the championship but the Saints have a 100% record so far this season and aim to go through the league unbeaten. Key will be the return from injury of some influential players but also the hard work that must be put in by everyone to strive to achieve the goals and create history for the club.