Modest try hero Craig Robertson has shared his glory with Heriot’s colleagues after bagging six touchdowns in Saturday’s 71-12 Tennent’s Premiership win over Edinburgh Accies at Raeburn Place.
The winger dotted down three times in each half as he Goldenacre men extended their impeccable start to the campaign to three bonus-point wins.
Jason Hill started and finished the 11-try success and there was also a double for Robert Kay, while Ross Jones grabbed a touchdown as well as landing eight conversions as Heriot’s built on bonus-point wins on each of the two previous weekends.
But it was Robertson who stood out as Heriot’s reached half-time 45-0 ahead then withstood a brief Accies rally in the early moments of the second half before kicking on to record a win the leaves them with a share of top spot.
“It was a team effort,” insisted Robertson, whose previous best effort was a five-try haul for his former club Gala against Kelso.
“Our job was to get a reaction from last week when we just about chucked it away after playing so well in the first half against Watsonians. That was the reaction we needed, albeit the first five or ten minutes of the second half weren’t up to our standard.”
And Robertson, who is in his second season at Goldenacre, believes Heriot’s are shaping up well as title contenders. “The confidence is back, we are having fun at training. Last season we started with two defeats and the mood this year is just so good.”
Accies earned credit for the way they started the second half having taken a hammering in the first period. Tries by James Pearse and Callum Ramm, the latter converted by Jamie Loomes, hinted at the potential in the side. But Heriot’s soon regained control.
Acknowledging that the defeat was a reminder of the task that faces Accies as they adjust to life in the top flight, assistant coach Mark Appleson believes the key is to take on board the lessons of the opening weeks of the campaign.
“We are new to the league and we know that we are learning. We’ve got to learn a bit quicker and there are major things that we need to improve, but we can’t be too down on the guys,” he said.
“The difference between the triumphant National Division One success and the current losing run is the cut-throat nature of the top flight which is unforgiving to sides committing errors.
“Our first-up defence has got to be a lot better. We gave away too many easy tries. After 15 to 20 minutes the game was over.”
“The bizarre thing is that I think our team last year would have coped with that a lot better. And I think we are going on to the pitch not quite believing that we deserve to be in the league. Everything we do at the moment is just a little bit more tentative than it was last year. I am certain it will come once we put in a full performance.”
Robertson’s tally only just eclipsed that of Currie Chieftains winger Ben Robbins. He claimed five of the six scores, Thomas Gordon bagging the other, as Chieftains came from behind to reach the break locked at 7-7 against Hawick at Malleny Park then clicked through the gears to post a 42-7 victory, with Gregor Hunter kicking all six conversions.
Boroughmuir also had a successful day, snatching a late 26-21 victory away to Glasgow Hawks having trailed 21-14 in the dying minutes. Rory Drummond, Jack Steele, Tom Wilson and a five-pointer in the final play from Johnny Matthews clinched victory, with Wilson booting three conversions.
However, Watsonians tasted defeat for the second successive Saturday when they went down 31-7 at home to Melrose with Josh Rowlands continuing his try a game record and Lee Millar converting for Sonians.