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McGee issues rallying cry to Caithness fans

By Alan Hendry

Caithness v Carrick Preview, Caithness v Carrick, Kris Hamilton, Rugby
Caithness v Carrick Preview, Caithness v Carrick, Kris Hamilton, Rugby

HEAD coach Tom McGee is urging Caithness rugby fans to turn out in force tomorrow as the Greens target their first home win since earning promotion to National League Division Three.

Last Saturday's 36-29 loss at St Boswells was the fourth defeat in the Greens' opening five fixtures – the only victory having come in Orkney. But there have been plenty of promising signs, and McGee is keen to see a strong show of support at Millbank for the visit of Carrick.

"We've lost our first two home games and I know that the group are desperate to get that win at home on the board," McGee said. "We just have to be more clinical, accurate and better with our execution, because we are creating opportunities but we're letting teams off the hook.

"We need every Greens supporter along on Saturday to get behind this young team. Not winning at home has just added a little bit of pressure to the group, so it will be important to have that support."

There is also, potentially, the prospect of seeing a significant piece of club history being made as skipper Marc Anderson is close to setting a new points-scoring record for Caithness. The present record of 1005 was set by the late Duncan Gray in the 1970s and '80s, while 24-year-old Anderson is on 997 going into Saturday's game.

At St Boswells, the Greens led 24-12 at half-time but succumbed to a late charge by the home side with the strong wind proving to be a key factor.

Try scorers for Caithness were Kris Hamilton (2), Evan Sutherland and Andrew Nicolson, with Marc Anderson adding one penalty and three conversions to take his tally for the day to nine points.

Tries for St Boswells came from Paudie Lawlor (3), Bernie Hennessey and captain Greg Nagle. Hennessey added three conversions and a penalty, and there was a further conversion from Martin Chisholm.

Caithness ended up with a losing bonus point and a try bonus point.

Reflecting on how the game went, McGee said: "It's a big cliché but it certainly was a game of two halves. The weather conditions dictated that.

"Both teams managed to use the wind to their advantage but we probably didn't capitalise as much and they were just a little bit more clinical.

"I think we only got into their half probably three or four times in that second half. One of the times we scored a really good breakaway which was well finished by Andrew Nicolson.

"Jack Macleod again was outstanding and he was a big loss for us when he went off after about 20 minutes. He is really finding his feet, and Kris Hamilton again was excellent. So there were positives there. The energy, the attitude, everything looked promising and it's just a case that we are not quite as ruthless as we need to be in terms of being accurate with the ball. I think that's the big lesson so far in this division – that we are being severely punished with the unforced errors in our game."

Kick-off tomorrow is at 2pm.

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