Dalziel draw gets them off bottom

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Dalziel moved off the bottom of RBS Championship A and away from the automatic relegation spot on Saturday, but there was a feeling that this was two points dropped rather than two gained.

Early on the home side had a chance when Scott Johnstone kicked long downfield, Greenock were unable to field it and Ross Westwood scooped the ball up. Unfortunately, he was unable to find a support player and the opportunity was lost.

Dalziel, however, scored soon after. Kris Watters picked the ball up from the back of a scrum and started a spell of pick-and-gos by the forwards.

David Fitzpatrick, David Irvine, George Sloan and Watters took the ball up 25 metres before Donnachie released winger Stevie Rowe and he passed outside to the supporting Donnachie who had an easy run in to score but was unable to convert his own try.

Dalziel’s defence was proving to be their best form of attack. Donnachie kicked long after receiving the restart and the Greenock receiver and support were flooded by Lee McWhinnie, Crawford Reid and Westwood. Only a penalty offence by Dalziel allowed Greenock to clear their lines.

Greenock were struggling to hold the home side back, but simple errors were leading to penalties for the visitors and killing the momentum. Finally the referee lost patience and gave Eddy Ferguson a yellow card, but even with the man disadvantage Dalziel were on top.

The second half started with Dalziel again attacking well, but losing the ball with silly penalties. Unfortunately, one penalty was within kicking distance and the Greenock kicker slotted it over to make it 5-3.

Dalziel almost responded immediately, substitute John Harris ghosting his way through, but Reid was unable to gather the pass.

Then George Sloan and his opposite number were sent off for fighting at a scrum - Dalziel’s fourth red card in six matches.

Dalziel extended their lead after a great piece of individual skill by Cammy King who, along with Stuart McLelland, was making his home 1st XV début.

King palmed a bouncing ball forward and over the head of the onrushing defence, caught it before it landed and then offloaded to Westwood who flicked it on to Reid. Reid then returned the ball to Westwood to score in the corner.

Harris was unable to convert, but Dalziel were 10-3 ahead with 15 minutes to go.

Greenock upped their game and looked certain to score after their winger broke through, but a superb covering tackle by McWhinnie stopped him.

However, with five minutes left the visitors did level the game. Dalziel were looking for an apparent knock on and the visitors’ centre crashed under the posts.

Dalziel 3rd XV took on Clydebank’s 2nd XV, looking for their first win since early November.

Neither team looked like scoring until Clydebank were awarded a penalty seven metres out. Dalziel didn’t respond quickly enough and the Clydebank openside crashed over to score a try that was converted.

The second half was a similarly tight affair, with Clydebank kicking a penalty to go 10-0 up.

Daziel pushed upfield and from a quick penalty prop Stuart Caulfield barged over to make it 10-5. However, they were unable to get a second try.

This week the 2nd and 3rd XVs are at home to Watsonians and Cumbuslang 2nd XV respectively, while the under-18s travel to play Greenock.