A CHARITY rugby match in memory of former Earlston number six Stewart Ramsay took place at the Haugh recently.

And the money raised from the bucket collection and auction is expected to reach between £5,000 and £6,000.

The cash will be divided between road safety campaign group Brake and Blood Bikes Scotland – two charities close to Ramsay family’s hearts.

Stewart died following a crash on the A68 near St Boswells on Friday, February 4, leaving his parents Liz and Ally; girlfriend Steph Pender and children Grace, four, and Ava, one, heartbroken.

Border Telegraph: Stewart Ramsay Picture Police ScotlandStewart Ramsay Picture Police Scotland

His close pal and former team mate Mark Stewart, 30, of Galashiels organised the event which also included a concert for the Denholm farm worker whose nickname was Rambo.

He said: “It was overwhelming and for people to dig deep like that, especially with the cost of living crisis, there are no words to describe it. It has exceeded all my expectation and I’ve been taken aback by people’s generosity.

“Stewart’s whole family was there and it was great to see Grace being first on the bouncy castle.

“And because there was a trophy at stake the game was competitive despite the very hot weather.

“Our team been thrown together on the day, but we just seemed to click. We all wanted to win.

“I organised strips for us to play in and they were green and white hoops, Celtic’s colours, because Stewart was a massive Celtic fan.

“There were a couple of Rangers fans in the team who weren’t so keen though.

“Our badge was based on a tattoo Stewart had on his forearm of a person holding a green balloon that signifies somebody letting go of another person and them going to heaven. And on the balloon string was his nickname Rambo.

“Before the game, we had a huddle in the changing room and I said ‘take a look at that jersey and take a look at that name. That name is close to your heart for a reason. Win it for him’.

“It was very emotional but I just managed to hold it back and then we had a minute’s silence.

“After the game was finished, obviously I lifted the trophy and went round as many people as I could to try to offer them a drink out of the cup.

“Most of the people stayed around and enjoyed a live singer, and I think I counted 140 people there for the auction. It was a well-supported event.”

“I’d like to thank everyone who donated auction prizes and the highest bid of the day was for Stuart Hogg’s signed Exeter top which went for over £400.”

Plans are now in place to make it an annual event.

Mr Stewart added: “I want this to be Stewart’s legacy and to be a memory for his children.

"I would like this to be a yearly thing. The cup will be staying at the club, and hopefully next year about this time, we’ll do it again although without the auction.”