To-day's BT Premiership match was preceeded by a minutes silence for Beth Livingstone of Heriots. The weather for the match was wet and bitterly cold with a strong wind blowing, mainly, the length of the pitch. Melrose opened with the wind at thier backs, but, despite Melrose pressure, it was Heriots who opened the scoring. At 12 minutes Michael Liness took advantage of Melrose players guarding the fringes of a maul on their 22 by breaking through the centre and scampering over for a try to the left of the posts with John Semple's attempted conversion being blown wide of the posts. Jason Baggott failed with a penalty attempt at 32 minutes and three minutes later Austin Lockington broke down the far side the ball being off-loaded to Sam Pecqueur and then to Fraser Thomson. The full back kicked ahead, but the wind caught the ball which squirted over the dead ball line before Thomson could ground it. Within a minute Baggott put Melrose on the scoresheet with a penalty.
Half time - Heriots 5 Melrose 3.
By now the rain was really heavy. Twelve minutes into the second half Robert Kay was yellow carded for a deliberate knock on and two minutes later Michael Maltman was shown a straight red card for foul play. Whilst Heriots were down to 13 men Melrose put in a driving maul from a penalty lineout just inside the Heriots 22 with skipper Grant Runciman bagging the try to the left of the posts. Baggott's conversion attempt suffered the same fate as Semple's earlier effort - wide of the posts courtesy of the wind. The result of the match sees the Bill McLaren Shield being returned to the Greenyards. Congratulations are extended to both sets of players and the officials for coping in atrocious weather conditions.
Heriots 5 Melrose 8
Heriots - Charlie Simpson, Gavin Parker, Robbie Mulveena, John Semple, Robert Kay, Rory Carmichael, Tom Wilson, Martin Bouab, Michael Liness, Stewart Mustard, Russell Nimmo, Clarke Smith, Michael Maltman, Jack McClean, Callum Marshall. Replacements - Alasdair Johnston, Grant Blair, Martin Highes, Alex Hagart, Junior Rosalea.
Melrose - Fraser Thomson, Austin Lockington, Nyle Godsmark, George Taylor, Sam Pecqueur, Jason Baggott, Murdo McAndrew, Dan Elkington, Russell Anderson, Ruairi McLeod, James Head, Aaron Welsh, Ruaridh Knott, Grant Runciman, Iain Moody. Replacements - Cammie Mackay, Jamie Bhatti, Ally Grieve, Bruce Colvine, Gavin Wood.
Referee - Graeme Wells. Assistants - Grant Denholm & Stephen Hart.