The Mackie sevens squad headed to Banff on Saturday to contest the annual sevens trophy. After a semi-final and quarter-final in the previous two weeks, hopes were high that the progress made would result in a reaching the final and the possibility of some silverware.
The draw was relatively kind to Mackie, landing in Group 2, they were up first against the Barbarians team – a mix of Banff players and players from other teams.
The opposition had some good players but lacked any real shape to their attack or defence. For Mackie it was a good starting opposition where they could work the patterns of play they are developing at training. The match ended with Mackie 47–0 to the good.
Game two was a different affair. Playing the hosts Banff who historically play very well at sevens. From a Banff scrum just inside the Mackie 22, Gray managed to snaffle the ball and accelerated away with Garden in support, drawing the tackle he offloaded to Garden who outstripped two defenders to score a great try. Mackie restarted and a pinpoint kick from Levack found Garden wide on the right who picked the ball out of the sky without breaking stride and raced away underneath the posts for his second try in under a minute! He converted himself. Try number three saw Mackie break for Lawson to score.
In the second half Banff scored, then Levack ran the length of the pitch to score before being replaced for some oxygen! Final score 24-5.
Game three was against Dyce, The opening try came from a great turnover by Kelly. Morgan quite brilliantly stopped, turned on a sixpence and roared off around the side, down the wing and then cut inside to burn up the grass on the way to the posts. It was nip and tuck for a few minutes before Gray snaffled up another scrappy scrum and looped round to dive over in the corner.
Try three came from another Gray turnover, Reid on at scrum half fed Kelly who delighted the Mackie travelling support with his trademark goosestep and turn of pace to open the gap for Reid and Kay to exploit and turn on the thrusters to gas down the touchline and under the posts. From the restart, Dyce tried a kick deep but Gray and Kay combined well with a counter attack the length of the pitch allowing Gray to get his fourth of the day.
The second half allowed Duncan Ross onto the score sheet, with excellent support running he took a pass from Garden and fended well to score in the corner. Things continued from the restart with Atkins reverse passing out to Kay running in space to get his second. With Dyce tiring, the final try went to Ross again who linked well with Reid to dive over again in the corner.
With three good performances and only leaking one try, Mackie topped the group and were put against CP’s Allstars in the final. The Allstars were a collection of Grammar players past and present, all with considerable pedigree. Receiving the kick off, Mackie put into action their game plan and tried to find a space. The Allstars were a savvy bunch though and this was proving hard to do. Then with nothing looking on, Levack broke through the midfield and was already thinking about his celebration before being stopped short by the ginger wonder Oatey! luckily as the tackle was made he managed to offload to Morgan who popped the ball down to put Mackie ahead 7–0 with the conversion. The Allstars replied quickly and at half-time it was 4 tries to 1 in favour of the Allstars. Tiring legs meant that Mackie were at times just half a yard out of position which allowed gaps to appear for the pacy wingers to exploit or just didn’t allow for a ‘check out’ pass. Oatey again the tormentor caught a kick off over the top of Lawson and raced away to score. In reply from the next kick off, it was Lawson who came out on top and dummied his way up to score an equally good try. A good spell of pressure again resulted in a try, Levack made the half break in the midfield and sent a long offload to Morgan who flanked to the left and set up Garden to score again. The final word unfortunately went to the lightning winger of the Allstars who pure and simple outpaced the defence to score. Final score Mackie 19 Allstars 38.