Watsonians aim to show they have learned lessons in Heriot’s rematch

HAVING suffered their only Super6 defeat so far at Goldenacre, Watsonians are determined to prove they have made progress since then when they welcome arch-rivals Heriot’s to Myreside for the rematch on Friday evening. 

Fergus Pringle reckoned his squad simply failed to perform in that match in round four, but they recovered well the following week with a win over the Southern Knights that saw them go into the tournament’s mid-season break as league leaders. Now the head coach wants his players to keep up the improvement and extend the two-point lead they currently hold at the top.

“The week’s break came at a good time for all the squads as the games have come around quickly and have been intense and physical contests,” Pringle said. “We’re all looking forward to the second round of games, starting with Heriot’s at Myreside on Friday night.

“We learnt some tough lessons down at Goldenacre in our last meeting in round four and are keen to put those lessons into practice on Friday night. After a solid performance against the Knights in round five, we know the areas we need to improve on in order to give ourselves a chance against Heriot’s.”

Pringle has made only one change to his starting 15 from the side that faced the Knights, with Edinburgh Rugby prop Sam Grahamslaw coming into the front row in place of Harrison Courtney, who drops to the bench. By contrast, Heriot’s coach Andrew Kelly has shuffled both his backs and pack. Rory McMichael and Callum Young come on to the wings, Andrew Nimmo and Cammy Fenton are in the front row, and captain Iain Wilson returns to the back row.

“All the players have trained really well over the break week but we feel this is the right team to take on Watsonians,” said Kelly, whose team were beaten at Millbrae last time out. “There has been a very good reaction to the loss against Ayr.

“The players have trained well over the down week and in the lead up to this game. The players are focused on fixing a few issues and putting in a good performance against Watsonians.”

Watsonians (v Heriot’s at Myreside, Friday 7.30pm): J Forbes (captain); H Elms, S King, D Coetzer, L Macpherson; M Morrison, R Cullen; S Grahamslaw, C Davies, S Longwell, L Ball, M Badenhorst, K Main, H Fisher, S Daly. Substitutes: C Wilson, T Jeffrey, H Courtney, K Watt, K van Niekerk, R Frostwick, J Reynolds, R Smith.

Heriot’s: R Jones; R McMichael, R Kay, S Edwards, C Young; B Houston, L Wheeldon; A Nimmo, C Fenton, J Scott, R Leishman, F Hastie, Iain Wilson (captain), J McClean, C Marshall. Substitutes: M Liness, M Jones, C Keen, R Seydak, J Hill, J Couper, A Ball, N Chamberlain.

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