FPs suffer away day disappointment in Fife

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CARNOUSTIE travelled to Rosyth for a league fixture on Saturday. The pitch was wet and soft but overhead conditions good with only a light wind blowing down the pitch.

Fife Southern kicked off with Gavin Dissel fielding before kicks were exchanged, the home side then drove and although Carnoustie stopped the drive were deemed to be offside allowing Southern to convert a penalty.

FPs kicked off and with a quick follow up secured the ball before breaking the line and gaining a penalty. Touch was found at the five-metre line, the line-out was driven but the ball went loose. Carnoustie won the subsequent scrum and again drove, drawing a penalty which allowed Chris Rankin to even the score.

The visitors fielded the restart and kicked upfield to the home 22. Southern won the line-out and, kicking long, found touch in the Carnoustie 22. The homesters made and kept better field position but the game had no fluency being littered with penalties. The FPs, at times, made inroads driving two penalties strongly but lost the ball on the second drive.

Southern then drove with the ball carrier tackled high but the penalty missed the posts. From the drop out Carnoustie fielded well, drove, but then knocked on. The visitors defended stoutly forcing knock-ons from the homesters, but failing to clear their lines until they won a five-metre scrum against the head and then a further scrum and clearing.

Carnoustie continued to concede penalties giving field position away. They were stopped after a good break only to lose the ball allowing Southern to run the ball wide without drawing the defence out. From a line-out Jonny Christie drove but the ball was slewed down and the chance lost.

The home side then drove but went over the ball. Carnoustie won the line-out and mauled the ball gaining a scrum when stopped and again winning the ball but gave away a penalty for hands in the ruck. Southern won the line-out but were stopped and half-time blown.

The visitors restarted and pushed forward with good hands before chipping over, but the full-back was alert and called the mark, finding touch with the kick. The throw in by Carnoustie was squint giving Southern possession and allowing them to break upfield but the defence forced the ball loose which allowed Kyle Burwood to pick up and run 50 metres before being forced to touch.

FPs won the line-out but Colin McNichol, when tackled, failed to release, but the homesters failed to find the posts with the kick. Carnoustie found touch from the drop out but Southern won the line-out and broke back into the danger zone. The visitors, having been ascendant in the scrums in the first half, were now in difficulties and penalised for not being properly bound on.

The scrum woes continued and from a retreating scrum the scrum-half failed to get the ball away and Southern snatched it up. Carnoustie then interfered from an offside position and the penalty was converted.

The restart failed to carry the requisite 10 metres and the visitors then dropped the scrum. Southern tapped the penalty and went wide with good hands but were pulled up for a forward pass. The scrum again was poor and a hurried clearance kick was up the middle of the pitch and immediately returned with interest.

Carnoustie were again penalised but the kick found touch in goal. FPs failed to clear their lines from the drop out and in stopping the runners were judged to have tackled high and found themselves a further three points behind.

With the game in its dying minutes it suddenly came to life, Southern won the scrum ball near halfway, it shot back, the defenders hesitated but the attackers responded gathering the ball going down the narrow side for the winger to race away and score with the kick added.

The visitors restarted and gathered the ball driving well, winning and tapping a penalty and again setting up a series of drives until Gavin Dissel was able to squeeze over but failed to convert, the game ended without the ball being centred.

Carnoustie are now in grave need of a win to restore confidence, but training numbers are good and regular attendance at training is the basis of turning things around.

Team: Burwood, Coates, McNichol, Shepherd, Reid, Rankin, Jeffrey, J. Christie, McDonald, Addison, Millar, Cowan, Dissel, Murray, Feighan, Bowles, P. Christie, Stewart and Cook.

Tomorrow (Saturday) is a cup game away to Panmure with a 2.30 p.m. kick-off.

RBS Caledonia Regional League

Division Two (Midlands)

P W L D F A BP Pts

Grangemouth 3 3 0 0 86 19 1 13

Harris Academy FP 3 3 0 0 73 56 1 13

St Andrews Un. 3 2 1 0 84 53 3 11

Madras 3 2 1 0 68 30 2 10

Stirling University 3 1 2 0 68 59 3 7

Blairgowrie 2 1 1 0 31 29 1 5

Fife Southern 3 1 2 0 26 60 1 5

Alloa 2 1 1 0 18 25 0 4

Kinross 3 0 3 0 43 89 0 0

Carnoustie HSFP 3 0 3 0 26 103 0 0