Carrick Rugby stand one win away from promotion after a thumping 93-7 win over Cumbernauld on Saturday at Maybole.
The win means Carrick go into Saturday’s home match against Loch Lomond sitting in second place in RBS West Regional Division Two, only requiring a win to overtake Oban at the top of the league.
Now coach Gordon Brown is thinking four more points after the demolition of a very much weakened Cumbernauld side in an E&C Firewood sponsored match at Academy Field last Saturday.
Skipper Raby won the toss and chose to play up the slope. It was an expectant large crowd hoping for some running rugby but the early Carrick nerves saw them spill the kick off. It took a wayward clearance kick, in the 7th minute, to settle those nerves. Montgomery, at full back, collected and attacked from deep within his own half broke the poorly aligned defence, fed left winger Clark who scorched Ferrari like to score. Johnson added the extra points.
Three minutes later Montgomery repeated the dose, gliding through the midfield defence before passing to right winger McCulloch who ghosted to the corner to score a converted try. This has been a feature of Carrick’s play all season. It is like waiting for some time for a city bus then three come all at once and on command the third try arrived a few minutes later. Ward quickly tapped the awarded penalty, the forwards charged, the ball was quickly recycled and Thomson had the easiest of trot ins to score another converted try.
Within the 20 minute mark the business for the day was done with the fourth try bonus point. Again a quickly taken penalty, a forwards charge, a quick recycle, a Montgomery line break and the prancing horse Clark disappeared on a run that Jeremy Clarkson would have admired. Strangely Johnson missed the conversion but Cumbernauld was not going to come back from a 26 point deficit. The Carrick Tifosi could now enjoy their gelati in the afternoon sun.
There was another four tries before the half finished. Carrick scored three with a singular reply from Cumbernauld leaving Raby with a rather sun burned face when he bought the scrum half’s dummy. Carrick’s three scores came from Clark to give him his hat trick with McCulloch and Thomson doubling their account.
With a 45-7 lead at half time Brown could afford to ring the changes and all of the seven man bench was soon on but before, second rower, Ali Dale got the call his sevens skills, finely honed in Arran last weekend, was used to produce the first two tries of the second half. Unfortunately replacement goal kicker McGregor had an off day and failed with both conversations.
Another six tries were scored in the second half with no reply. McCulloch duly got his hat trick; replacement winger Dewar crossed the white wash twice, with Wyllie, Logan and Johnson one each.
Oban sit top of West league two with 94 points and all games played, Carrick are second with 90 points and one game to play and Garnock are third with 89 points and two games to play. Carrick only need a four point victory next Saturday to overtake Oban as they have a vastly superior points scored differential.
So next Saturday is Dee Day for the Carrick Tifosi; a trip to Majorca for sun, sand and sea at the sevens beach tournament there, a trip to Scostoun for the penultimate round of the IRB international sevens tournament or a day and evening in Maybole. Saturday’s game at the Academy will kick off at 3pm but check with club website as the club is looking for a 2pm kick off to facilitate those going to the Annual Dinner in the Town Hall for 7pm.