A GALLANT Melrose side battled hard in the final of the BSW Timber Group Hawick Sevens on Saturday at Mansfield Park.

But a revitalised Jed-Forest side reaped the reward of their experience with a 17-10 win to add the title to the club’s success at Peebles a week earlier.

It was the second all-Borders final in as many weeks.

And again, Jed proved that the players are geared for the new set-up next season at 15-a-side level while Melrose, under new coach Stuart Johnson, are building a team with new faces and a few well-known ones.

Johnson told us: "We were happy to get to the final against a very tough Jed side and we could have won.

"The commitment and attitude was great, and it was a very physical final as it was always going to be with Borders clubs involved."

Jed coach Ross Goodfellow was delighted with the win and with Robbie Yourston, who picked up the Player-of-the-Tournament award.

“The boys dug in well in different conditions from Peebles," he said.

"I thought we were unbelievable and some of the tackling was dominant. We look at the bench and there are no fears and the sevens are a great way for the boys to improve, and at the end of the day, it’s another trophy in the cabinet.

“Of course, the Super Six boys are not here,” he admitted. “And that helps a great deal. But we have brought in a couple of players and come on a lot and it comes to a bit of brawn.”

On the way to the final, and the club’s first in at the Hawick Sevens since 2002, Jed defeated Berwick, Watsonians and Selkirk while Melrose accounted for Tynedale, Hawick and Boroughmuir.

Melrose led 10-5 at the break with two James Brown tries to one from Rory Marshall.

In a physical contest, two scores from Callum Young sealed the victory.

In the first of the semi-finals, Melrose came from behind to knock out Boroughmuir.

Gavin Parker and Gavin Welsh put the Meggetland side side in front after David Colvine had given Melrose the lead.

But further tries from Lewis Mallin and Colvine stretched the Melrose advantage before Chris Raymond and Parker exchanged scores.

Jed proved too strong for Selkirk in the second semi and led 17-0 at the interval with tries from Callum Young, Rory Marshall, and Lewis Young.

Ryan Cottrell hit back with a try, but scores from Gary Munro and Robbie Shirra-Gibb ensured a comfortable win.

The Kings series resume at Melrose in April with Jed (20 points), Melrose (12) and Hawick (10) leading the way.


First round: Kelso (bye); Peebles 17-21 Boroughmuir; Melrose 12-10 Tynedale; Langholm 0-38 Hawick; Berwick 12-31 Jed-Forest; Hawick Force 15-19 Watsonians; Edinburgh Accies 12-17 Selkirk; Gala (bye).

Second round: Kelso 14-31 Boroughmuir; Melrose 33-14 Hawick; Jed-Forest 26-0 Watsonians; Selkirk 14-5 Gala.

Semi-finals: Boroughmuir 21-28 Melrose; Jed-Forest 31-5 Selkirk.

Final: Melrose 10-17 Jed-Forest.

Jed-Forest: N Stingl, L Young, D Buckley, R Shirra-Gibb, R Marshall, C Young, G Munro, G Young, M Mitchell, R Yourston.

Melrose: G Wood, G McWilliam, C Meager, J Brown, D Colvine, L Mallin, T Klein, C Raymond, E McVicker, D Crawford.