Sat 28
Orkney Ladies RFC
The Big Cat Family Travel 400 miles to Battle The Dragons

The Big Cat Family Travel 400 miles to Battle The Dragons

By Anna Milligan
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Orkney Ladies RFC 32 - 10 Aberdeenshire Quines RFC

Saturday saw the Quines travel up to Orkney for the very first time. Team spirits were high as the 17 woman squad along with head coach Graeme Buchan and assistant coach Jeff ‘Rocky’ Killman boarded their flight to Kirkwall. For newbie Sam Tindill, this was her first time on a plane! The flight was smooth sailing which saw no bouts of travel sickness on journey 1 of 3 of the day. The girls were met by various members of Treasurer Gemma Adam’s family who had kindly offered to transport them to Kirkwall Grammar School for 12pm kickoff.

It was an overcast, but thankfully rain-free day as the Quines took to the pitch eager to begin the match. With the home team kicking to begin the game, the first 20 minutes saw a grueling physical match-up between the Quines and the Dragons. At 12.20pm the Dragons managed to squeeze past the Quines defensive line to score the first try of the match which went unconverted leaving them in the lead 5-0.

Fresh back from injury, number 11 Chloe McGregor was relieved by the speedy Oonagh Murray on the pitch as Quines continued to battle for possession. The forwards continued to push through a series of strenuous scrums while the backs tried out some new calls. At 12.30 number 4 Hannah Ridgway got some time to breathe while Sam Tindill got on to the pitch for her first match as a Quine. Miscommunication between the sidelines and the pitch after this subsitution meant that President Anna Milligan, who does not usually play Second-Row due to pain from chronic injuries, squeezed herself into the boiler house when no one else volunteered to fill Hannah’s spot committing herself to a playing performance better suited to the set of the Walking Dead. At 12.40, the Dragons scored another try which was converted to make the score 12-0.

HT: 12 – 0

The second half saw the Quines come back with more motivation for some Dragon slaying after a rousing pep talk from our Captain Maedbh ‘Mav’ Smyth. The first fifteen minutes of the second half went try free as both teams battled for the ball. Orkney used speed and agility to score a try at 12.56pm bringing the score to 17-0. The Dragons scored two minutes later bringing the score to 22-0. The Quines continued to leave everything on the pitch, and some expert manoeuvring from our back line saw Vice-Captain Naomi ‘Slam’ Duncan score the first try of the match at 1.10pm. Our fabulous 10 Jenna Woods was unable to convert despite a strong kick. The score was now 22-5. Unfortunately, 10 minutes from Full-Time, our reliable Open-Side Eilidh Webster suffered a back injury which forced her to leave the field. Despite this, the Quines were eager to maintain pressure on the Dragons.

The next ten minutes saw two more tries from the Dragons bringing the score to 32-5 with only 6 minutes left on the clock. After a brilliant break from Jenna Woods, our speedy gonzalez 13 Mhairi ‘Baz’ MacPhail edged out the Dragons to score a try bringing the score to 32-10. Despite Jenna’s fabulous kicking skills, this went unconverted.

FT : 32 – 10

The match was won by Orkney Dragon’s after a physical battle lasting the full 80 minutes. The Quines were exhausted as they truly left everything on the pitch, making both Graeme and Jeff very proud.

After a delicious aftermatch tea at the Orkney RFC clubhouse cooked by Gemma Adam’s mama consisting of lasagne and apple crumble, the girls headed to Stromness to begin the long journey back to Aberdeen. The girls took the ferry to Scrabster where they all boarded the bus and began providing the bus driver with some stellar entertainment for the long drive. With rousing renditions of ‘Don’t Stop Believing’, ‘Flower of Scotland’ and some Irish songs no one but Mav knows the words to, the girls were in a great mood. The bus ride also involved some necessary Court Sessions where punishments were given out for some ‘unacceptable’ but hilarious antics of the Quines.

The girls arrived back in Aberdeen at 12:30am exhausted, with a number of injured players, but ready to work hard this week at training for our next long journey and match against Shetland on October 5th.

MOTM from the Dragons went to Maedbh ‘Mav’ Smyth for her solid effort in attack and defence.

FOTM went to Zia ‘Zazzles’ Bartlett for her powerful tackles throughout the match.

BOTM went to Oonagh Murray for her excellent speed, defense and ball handling during the match.

DOTD went to both Jenna Woods and Naomi ‘Slam’ Duncan for their embarrassing antics during the day. Naomi started the day off right by standing in the check in line at the airport without needing to check in baggage and for later asking security if they would confiscate her jelly. Meanwhile, after the match, Jenna spent 10 minutes claiming her trousers had been stolen when she had actually just left them outside the shower stall.

Match Report by Hannah Ridgway.


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Match details

Match date

Sat 28, Sep 2019