Peterhead were to be the obstacle between them and some silverware, a team Mackie had beaten comfortably in the league home and away. However, the last few performances had seen some backward steps in terms of form in what has been a long and tumultuous season. It was time to end on a high.
From the start, Mackie started with an intensity last seen somewhere around January, with solid rucking and quick, clean ball to the speed merchants out wide. This cocktail of simple, controlled rugby led to a nice early try in the corner for Chris Kay. More artistry was required for the second with scrum-half Dawson and full-back Thurlow linking nicely down the blindside, the number nine sliding in at the right after a dummy and pass from the flamboyant fifteen. The 2’s then opted for power over precision with Matthew Flynn baring his teeth (well, the remaining ones) to bulldoze his way over the line, Peterhead defenders strewn like seaweed on a shallow tide.
More scores were to follow, not to mention extras by the ever-reliable boot of hooker-extraordinaire Callum Reddish. First though, it was Peterhead’s turn to apply some pressure, bashing up the park like a deep-sea trawler to heave over the line. Their pick and drive tactics almost elicited another try, but aggressive tackles from Dave Austen, James Sadio and of course, Flynn, put paid to any aspirations of closing the gap. Andy Reid, injury-free and free-flowing scored for the 2’s instead, looping round Thurlow for a classic score in the corner. Chris Kay added to the spoils, running straight and direct for a dive under the posts. Indeed, during that first half it was difficult to keep up with the flurry of five-pointers.
Of course, with every peak comes a trough and that came in the second-half. Players lacking fitness and conviction began drifting sideways like crabs, rucks began to resemble hugs at a wedding and heads began to sag. It took the addition of Colin Mair, the team coach and speech therapist, to inject some urgency. Suddenly, the floodgates re-opened with further tries for Lawson, Reid and McConachie to put a nice sheen on a good afternoon’s endeavours. For next season the Mighty 2’s can look back on this flawed yet ferocious final with great encouragement. Calm, collected possession coupled with direct and supported running seems to be the order of the day. And with a sliver plate now in the cabinet, let’s hope it’s a dish served time and again after the summer. Final score – 67-5.
Team: Glen Moir, Callum Reddish, James Sadio, Stuart Byers, Stuart Lawson, David Austen, Matthew Flynn, Ben Newell, Colin Dawson (c), Andy Reid, Chris Kay, Jamie McConachie, Kieran Ferguson, Mark Beadie, Alex Thurlow, Barry Milne, Colin Muir.
Author - Alex 'Con Chon Chonnor' Thurlow