Heriot’s coach Phil Smith has warned his players not to be misled by the current league position of tomorrow’s opponents Boroughmuir, who make the trip across the Capital for what promises to be another intriguing BT Premiership clash (kick-off 3pm).
Heriot’s, whose three-match winning run has seen them ascend the table to sit third, have Edinburgh professionals Junior Rasolea and Murray McCallum available, while Jack Turley is an absentee and is replaced by Michael Maltman.
“After putting together a couple of decent performances the lads are keen to maintain the momentum this weekend by continuing to work on the areas of our game that need fixed, while not forgetting about the areas that have got us to this stage,” said Smith.
“However, we will be facing a Boroughmuir squad buoyed by last weekend’s win. Looking at their results, it would appear they have been competitive in each game which means we cannot afford to be complacent. This is made easier with them being city rivals, but also by the fact they have a host of very good players, who, if allowed can really hurt any opposition.”
For the visitors, the match at home to Marr (34-32) delivered a first success of the season. With the losing start to the campaign now ended, they will be looking to generate some momentum. Coach Peter Wright makes only one change to his starting side, with Edinburgh Rugby lock Lewis Carmichael replacing Dan Marek, who starts on the bench.
Wright has been happy with the mood in the camp and is ready for another challenge, saying: “It was good to get a win last week. The players have trained with more of a smile on their face. But they know this is another tough game. We have been working on getting the basics right and getting our discipline right.”
Muir currently sit second from bottom in the league table, with a tally of seven points. Watsonians have the same total and the Myreside men can do themselves a massive favour by posting a win away to basement dwellers Hawick.
Sonians coach Steve Lawrie admits that his attempt to play a particular style of rugby is still a work in progress. However, he is gradually implementing his methods and that appears to be paying off, as a vastly -improved defensive effort in last week’s loss against Heriot’s showed. Lawrie, who has Edinburgh players Neil Cochrane, Jason Harries and Chris Dean at his disposal, also welcomes back Ewan Fox, Sean Crombie and Ali Harris as he seeks a return to winning ways.
“Despite the result not going our way, the squad have focused on the many positives from the performance as we look to develop a more consistent edge,” said Lawrie of the loss against Heriot’s.
And of tomorrow’s encounter, he added, “With both teams desperate for a win, this should be a cracker down at Mansfield.”
After defeats on successive Saturdays, Currie Chieftains have slipped to fifth spot and they are desperate to rediscover the winning feeling. However, they face another tough test when they welcome Glasgow Hawks to Malleny Park.
Chieftains coach Ben Cairns has made some interesting selections, none more so than switching Jamie Forbes to scrum half in place of Charlie Shiel, who is rested by Edinburgh Rugby. Replacing Forbes at stand off will be Adam Hastings, who is released by Glasgow Warriors.
“The players understand we have been the architects of our own downfall in our last two outings and we have worked hard this week on how we can improve the consistency of our performance” said Cairns. “Hawks have had a solid start to the season with some excellent performances. They will be buoyed by the first year pros they have available to them this weekend and we know we will have to bring a much-improved performance if we are to get our campaign back on track.”