Gala 15

Aberdeen Grammar 5

David Morrison

at Netherdale

GALA took a giant step towards the top flight on Saturday amidst howling gales and heavy showers.

It wasn't a day for the feint-hearted or the rugby purists as the conditions prevented either team demonstrating their full capabilities.

Kicks were regularly blown off course and the wet ball often spilled.

But it was all about winning as the Maroons aim for a top six finish.

Ross Cooke slotted a fourth-minute penalty after some early pressure from the home team.

But they were unable to build on the encouraging start as the match turned into an arm-wrestle with both defences on top.

With half time approaching Gala finally made the breakthrough with John Turnbull darting over.

Cooke added the conversion to give the home team a deserved 10-0 advantage at the interval.

Keeping the ball tight and making hard yards proved to be the best option after half time.

And Gala moved further in front approaching the 50th minute as Stevie Cairns barged over.

Cooke couldn't land the conversion, leaving the score at 15-0.

While Aberdeen had shown plenty appetite they had come up against a firm Gala defence.

But their efforts were finally rewarded on the hour as Ewan Stewart touched down out wide.

The conditions prevented Bryn Shanks from finding the target with the conversion.

Aberdeen continued to press in the closing stages but Gala never really looked like giving up the lead.

Gala: S Fairburn, R Cooke, R Jeffrey, D Nicholson, J Frew, J Turnbull, L Johnston, M Christie, C Keen, T Logan, C Weir, C Pate, S Cairns, A Dun & E Dods. Replacements: J Easson, J Watson, D Keddie, G Speirs & S Wilkinson.