Club preview: Hurting Heriot’s aim to bounce back against Sonians

Heriot's head coach Phil Smith
Heriot's head coach Phil Smith
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Heriot’s coach Phil Smith wants his men to bounce back from last weekend’s painful loss when they welcome Watsonians for a mouth watering Capital derby tomorrow (kick-off, 2pm).

Smith admitted that he was “raging” after his players succumbed to a late score away to Hawick on Saturday, and he knows that they can ill afford another slip as the race for the BT Premiership play-off spots intensifies.

“We faltered last week, while Watsonians continued their good run of form,” he said. “However, there is nothing like a local derby and with a full house I am hoping to get a positive reaction from the squad.”

Adding spice to the Goldenacre contest is the fact that Sonians coach Steve Lawrie is making a first return to his former club since taking on the role at Myreside. His new charges have shrugged off a mixed start to the campaign to produce a string of impressive performances that have powered Sonians into fifth spot knowing that a bonus-point win could take them into the top four at the expense of Heriot’s.

Lawrie again has Edinburgh winger Jason Harries, scorer of a hat-trick last week, in his side. Despite that ten-try romp, he has identified aspects that require attention.

“We were pleased with some of our execution in attack versus Marr, however, the players have identified a few areas that are in need of a tweak,” he said. “We also didn’t do a huge amount of defending last week so we will need to ensure we are robust in this area of our game.”

Currie Chieftains welcome league leaders Melrose (2.30pm) with a further step towards achieving a top-two finish as the target. As they showed in back-to-back wins over Ayr and Boroughmuir, Chieftains have a range of weapons in their armoury. With confidence high, the hosts are keen to measure their recent progress against the pacesetters and will be looking to deploy the cutting edge they possess behind the scrum.

Having slipped to the foot of the table after a heavy losing to Chieftains, Muir can ill afford any slip-up when they travel to face fellow strugglers Marr.

“What a massive game for both clubs, a real relegation battle with the winner maybe getting some momentum,” admitted Muir coach Peter Wright.