Heriot’s rugby will have an extra incentive tackling early unbeaten BT Premiership leaders Stirling County at Goldenacre on Saturday.
The match marks the end of Scottish Club International captain Murray Douglas’s association, at least temporarily, as he prepares to fly out 48 hours later to Australia.
Formerly with Kirkcaldy and Aberdeen Grammar FPs, Douglas is aiming for a better finale to his time with Heriot’s than the debut defeat at Melrose going into season 2012-13.
“It certainly would be good to sign off with a win and especially given the way we defended to claim the win at Hawick last weekend there is every chance,” said back five forward, Douglas. However, he quickly added: “Stirling have started with two wins and will have momentum in addition to a fine coach in Graeme Young.”
Douglas indicated some time ago that once he qualified as a solicitor in the Capital he planned to go overseas. Final exams were passed last week but he takes with him outstanding rugby memories including an appearance for Edinburgh in the Pro 12 from off the bench at Cardiff at the end of 2011-12 season.
However, as that outing ended in defeat there are probably happier memories of winning the Scottish Cup last April with Heriot’s against Glasgow Hawks. Also, he has represented Scottish Club International in each of the past two seasons.
“Captaining Scottish clubs was a great honour but so, too, was the cup win. Although collectively and individually Heriot’s were out of sorts when losing to Hawks on the opening day this season we got things back on track at Hawick. Particularly when they had the ball Hawick looked really dangerous and although they came at us with two tries in quick succession we were able to keep them out in the last five minutes for a good away win.”
Douglas’ intends continuing his rugby career in Melbourne and, although he has options, will wait until settled before deciding on a club. Whoever lands his signature will, though, be acquiring one of the most respected figures in the Scottish club game.