Monday, 31 March 2014

Feb/Mar player of the month poll

With the 1st XV having played their final game of 2013/2014, voting is now open for the last player of the month poll of the season. 

All players eligible have been in two match day squads in February and March.

The poll is open until Friday at 4pm.

Vote here.

End of season dinner

The Ayr RFC end of season dinner will be held on Friday 2nd May and will once again be a black tie event.

Tickets are £30 per head and include:

Ginger Grouse Drink on arrival;
Three-course meal;
Pre-meal grace;
Guest speaker;
Award presentations;
Award winners pictures;
Live music - Jack Daniels Band;

Table sizes are to be 8 - 12 people.  Cash and any dietary requirements by 25th April - please contact Eilidh ( or Andrew ( to book.

Saturday, 29 March 2014

Stuart Fenwick talks to the Herald about girls' rugby

Ayr community development officer Stuart Fenwick speaks to Nick Rodger in today's sports section of the Herald about the rude health of girls' rugby at the club ahead of the Brewin Dolphin Girls Cup Finals Day at Stirling tomorrow.

Iain Park of Langholm RFC also talks of how the girls' section at the club is punching well above its weight.

Read the article here.

Friday, 28 March 2014

Hawick v Ayr preview

After last week's dramatic win over Gala, Ayr are heading back to the Borders tomorrow to take on Hawick in the final league game of the season.  This tie, postponed from earlier in the season, not only marks the last match for head coach Peter Laverie but also the debut of US Sevens star Carlin Isles on Scottish turf.

Laverie has spent five great years with Ayr, the penultimate one being the club's most successful ever and the last as head coach, so the players will surely want his final game in charge to be a win. 

It could be a memorable day with Isles, dubbed the 'fastest man in rugby', lining up on the wing for Ayr after his arrival in Scotland to join Glasgow Warriors a few weeks ago. 

"In a twist of fate, Carlin gets his first game for the club just as the world's fastest coach is leaving!" jests Laverie.

Joking aside, Laverie knows it will be a difficult task to take on Hawick on their home patch.

"Both sides will want to put on a decent show for the spectators to round off what has been a long, hard season.  The Hawick team will be buoyed by their excellent and important victory over Heriots last week to guarantee Premiership rugby next season and will be free to play without the pressure of league business."

He concludes: "I'd like to think we can finish our campaign off with some good, attractive, attacking rugby."

There should be attacking rugby aplenty with Isles on the left wing and last week's double try-scorer Kerr Gossman on the right.  Older brother Craig moves to full-back with captain Grant Anderson coming in at the centre in the place of an ill Robbie Fergusson. 

The quick and creative duo of Ross Curle and Peter Jericevich link up at half-back, as Finn Russell lines up at centre for Glasgow Warriors against the Ospreys tonight.

There is a dynamic bench, with recent Scotland under-20s caps James Malcolm and D'arcy Rae featuring alongside rangy Craig Brown and the two Murrays, McConnell and Beckwith.


15. Craig Gossman, 14. Kerr Gossman, 13. Grant Anderson (capt.), 12. Dean Kelbrick, 11. Carlin Isles; 10. Ross Curle, 9. Peter Jericevich; 1. Denford Mutamangira, 2. Fergus Scott, 3. Stuart Fenwick; 4. Callum Templeton, 5. Scott Sutherland; 6. Graham Fisken, 7. Andrew Dunlop; 8. Peter McCallum.


16. James Malcolm, 17. D'arcy Rae, 18. Craig Brown, 19. Murray McConnell, 20. Murray Beckwith.

Kick-off 3pm.

Monday, 24 March 2014

Ayr president on the future of club rugby

I hear all this doom and gloom about Scottish club rugby then I look at Ayr and I don’t understand.  We have five hundred and thirty playing members throughout the club.  Our under-16 team is top of the national league and haven’t lost a game; our under-18 team are top of their league and have only lost once; our women’s team have only been going for two years and finished second in their league with Emily Irving being capped this year; our 2nd XV are second top of the national reserve league; and our 1st XV are fourth in the Premiership but we’ll do better next year.
I’m not saying that because I want to boast about Ayr - it’s because I don’t see why other clubs can’t do the same.
I’m definitely for creating an eight team super league as the SRU suggested back in December.  We need to identify the strongest eight clubs in the country, with a geographic spread across the country, and present it is a fait accompli, because too many clubs fear missing out and will always drag their feet - but we can’t carry on drifting like this.  It’s up to the clubs that don’t initially make it into the top eight to work hard to get there.
I spoke to the guys from Jersey when we played them in the British and Irish Cup.  They told me that the get £26,000 a month from the RFU.  Now, if the top eight clubs could get £10,000 a month they could do a huge amount with that cash.  People think that would all go on players but about sixty percent would be on marketing, coaching, administration, and so on.  I don’t think it would be that hard for the SRU to raise the money when you think about the value to the game of raising the standards.
By improving the club game you are then widening your potential revenue streams - through sponsorship, gate receipts, hospitality, broadcasting rights, and so on.  We do pretty well in raising cash at Ayr, but I can see there are a lot of untapped areas still to be exploited.
The league needs to be given a sensible level of autonomy.  They should be allowed to find their own sponsors so that the competition really has its own identity, and they should be free to spend their money however they see fit (with the SRU reserving the right to audit the clubs to check that their contribution is not being wasted).
Club rugby is too squeamish about money and paying players - but that is the world we are now living in and you are burying your head in the sand if you think that ambitious players - and administrators for that matter - are going to be giving up their time for free in six years’ time.  But we should work a bonus system, and that goes from the national team down.  So you are paid when you train, you are paid some more when you play, and you are paid even more when you win.
- Billy McHarg, Ayr RFC president.

Ayr Ladies 39 Glasgow University 7

Ayr Ladies ran in six tries to beat Glasgow University Women and win their RBS Bowl semi-final at Millbrae on Sunday afternoon.

Glasgow had beaten Ayr twice already in the league and the ladies knew it would be a tough encounter.

The visitors had the majority of the possession in the first quarter but Ayr managed to get their hands on the ball after some hard work from prop Gemma Swankie and flanker Claire McGill, who was a safe pair of hands in the line-out.  They had an early opportunity to score but the referee adjudged they had been held-up.

It was a sunny but cold day in Alloway and there were handling errors from both teams, the huge hits put in by the tough Glasgow forwards possibly responsible for a few spills by the home side.

Ayr were strong in the set piece - hooker Amy McGillivray steady with her throws and McGill again proving useful at her own line-out as well as the opposition's - and managed to get a good shove on at the scrum.  Flanker Laura Somerville, number eight Lisa Croniken and inside centre Laura Turner were solid in the tackle and displayed strength in their running.

However, it was Glasgow University who got on the scoreboard first, their pacy winger shooting off through the defence to nab a converted try.  0-7.

Ayr Ladies dug deep though and the combined efforts of prop Louise Maclauchlan, wingers Ann-Marie Connelly and Phoebe McDowall and outside centre Daryl Paterson moved them out of their own half.  It wasn't long before lock Ruth Barclay-Paterson forced her way over for Ayr's opening score.  Full-back Emily Irving couldn't manage the wide conversion.  5-7.

The sides exchanged a few turnovers, as well as penalties, but it was Glasgow who were dominating, pinning Ayr into their own half for some time.  But when Ayr did get some possession, centres Turner and Paterson showed ambition to run it, enthusiastically cheered on by the home crowd. 

Glasgow had another attacking opportunity through their speedy wingers but a forward pass was their undoing.  Another solid line-out for Ayr allowed them to trundle slowly but surely to Glasgow's line and it was Barclay-Paterson who again barrelled over for another unconverted try.  10-7.

The second half began with some more handling errors but Ayr didn't let it bother them.  They remained calm to claim possession and territory and some hard hits from replacement Kirstin Daly helped their cause.

Again, it was the line-out that allowed them to drive for the line and this time it was lock Ashleigh Nelson who powered over for an unconverted try.  15-7.

Ayr Ladies were now up and running and determined not to let Glasgow University back into the match.  Croniken showed her pace to get them into a good position and when the visitors infringed, a quick tap and go from Daly allowed the replacement to nip over for a try.  20-7.

Further exciting bursts from McGillivray, Swankie, Connelly and McDowall put Glasgow under pressure and it wasn't long before a turnover from Ayr released Irving and she flew under the posts for try number five.  25-7.

Ayr unfortunately gave away a few penalties, giving Glasgow some, but the home defence snuffed out any attacking opportunities near their line. 

A solid Ayr scrum allowed Irving to race off again and she glided over for a try she converted herself.  32-7.

The home side were now in control and their confidence was growing, displayed by an excellent take of a high ball by replacement Megan Thomson.  She combined with Croniken to move play into Glasgow's half and yet more poaching at the line-out led to Turner burrowing over the line but Glasgow held her up.

The resulting scrum saw Croniken pick up at the back and fly in for try number seven, which Irving converted.  39-7.

A few moments later and the referee blew the whistle to send Ayr Ladies into the RBS Bowl final, where they will face Broughton.

Final score: Ayr Ladies 39 Glasgow University 7.

- Elena Hogarth.

Sunday, 23 March 2014

Gala 33 Ayr 34

It was a suitably dramatic finale to the RBS Premiership as Ayr clung on for a victory over Gala at a packed Netherdale.

It was a beautiful day in the Borders but the home side didn't want to take advantage of the dry conditions and instead opted to get their first points on the board via the trusty boot of stand-off David O'Hagan, after Ayr gave away a penalty with three minutes gone.  3-0.

It was only two minutes later that Ayr struck their first blow, the ball swiftly being moved into the hands of Craig Gossman who shimmied his way round tacklers, sold a dummy and fired on up the wing for the first try.  Finn Russell's touchline conversion attempt was short.  3-5.

Gala didn't panic and tried to release their flying winger Gerald Sibanda but he couldn't get past Kerr Gossman, who put in some doughty tackles all day.  He unfortunately found himself being flipped over, legs flailing, by the Gala defence, which kicked off the first round of fisticuffs.  It was quickly contained by referee Neil Paterson, who then awarded Gala a penalty, which O'Hagan knocked over.  6-5.

The home side were rampant in the scrum but their line-out in Ayr's 22 went awry and they were shoved off the park.  The visitors fared better, with lock Scott Sutherland being a usual towering presence.  Number eight Peter McCallum burst from the back of a drive to scurry away into Gala's half but the ball couldn't find the hands of inside centre Dean Kelbrick.

Gala couldn't get their backs going, but flanker Stevie Cairns was just as speedy and would have been away up the pitch were it not for the defensive efforts of Ayr scrum-half Murray McConnell, who whipped the crowd up into a frenzy with his tenacious terrier antics.

Ayr's penalty count was too high though, but Gala again went for the posts at twenty minutes, O'Hagan successful with kick number three.  9-5.

Four minutes later and the Gala stand-off had another go but this one hit the upright.  Ayr's clearance wasn't far enough and the ball sailed into the arms of Gala full-back Andy McLean but it was later knocked-on.

Ayr's scrum was a bit steadier and allowed flanker James Eddie to make a break but a forward pass brought the attack to a halt.  Both sides had a couple of solid line-outs and Gala managed to launch a few runs but they were quickly snuffed out by Kelbrick and Russell.

Ayr captain Grant Anderson displayed his trademark strong running but it was McCallum who was making ground, allowing McConnell to put in a cross-field kick, which went too far for Craig Gossman to collect.

The visitors kept possession and at thirty-three minutes, Eddie and Craig Gossman combined to send the flanker over for Ayr's second try.  Russell couldn't convert.  9-10.

Gala briefly regained possession but prop Ewan McQuillin was soon brought crashing down by a excellent textbook tackle from Ayr outside centre Ross Curle.

At thirty-six minutes, Ayr moved proceedings into Gala's 22 and Kerr Gossman zig-zagged his way through the defence to score.  Russell converted.  9-17.

The younger Gossman was clearly irking Gala, as a few minutes later when play was stopped, he was shoved off the pitch by centre Chris Auld, narrowly missing a line of ball kids.

Despite some strong play from flanker Andrew Dunlop, Ayr couldn't wrack up any more points in the first half, another forward pass not helping their cause, and they gave away a penalty which O'Hagan duly kicked.  12-17.

It was the home team's turn to concede a penalty for not rolling away two minutes into the second half.  Russell knocked it over the crossbar.  12-20.

Another scuffle broke out but the players involved quickly saw the folly of it and returned to action. 

Ayr again worked well at the line-out and a powerful drive allowed prop Denford Mutamangira to bash his way through the first wave of Gala defence but the Maroons stayed solid and managed to get a scrum on their own five-metre line.  However, they somehow lost control of the ball and it came bobbling out on Ayr's side, where it was scooped up by Curle, who jinked over for a try which Russell converted.  12-27.

There was a short break whilst Auld was escorted from the field with an arm injury.

Gala, wildly cheered on by their dedicated fans, didn't panic at being fifteen points adrift.  They secured possession but it was slow ball and they couldn't do anything with it.  Their cause was helped at fifty-nine minutes when Dunlop found himself in the sin-bin. 

A minute later and Gregor Mein made a blistering break which looked like a certain try had it not been for the defensive attentions of both Gossmans.  It got Gala into a good position though and prop Rory Sutherland was bundled over for a try.  O'Hagan converted.  19-27.

Ayr had a chance for more points at sixty-three minutes but Russell missed a penalty kick. 

There was a dip in intensity from both sides, but that was hardly any wonder considering how much effort they were putting in.  Gala again used their strong scrum to cause Ayr problems but Mutamangira, hooker Fergus Scott and veteran prop Gordon Sykes put in strong performances to contain them.

Just as it looked like Ayr were going for another try, Gala intercepted and raced off, only to be tracked down yet again by the pacy Gossmans, prompting one Gala supporter to suggest that the only way to get ahead would be to maim Craig.  He wasn't the one they should have been worrying about.

With ten or so minutes to go, Gala's troubles were eased when Ayr replacement flanker Graham Fisken was yellow-carded and replacement forward Tom Weir sent the crowd into raptures with his try.  O'Hagan converted.  26-27.

The Netherdale faithful was quickly silenced though as Kerr Gossman held firm to dive over for Ayr's fifth try.  Russell easily kicked the conversion.  26-34.

The clock was deceiving the fans as it hadn't been stopped for Auld's injury and it looked like there was only a minute left when there were seven, enough time for Gala to prove just why they had got themselves to the top of the league.

Ayr showed some sturdy defence from, amongst others, replacement scrum-half Peter Jericevich and Kelbrick, who had put his body on the line all day, resulting in a bloody nose.  But Gala were determined and it was their iconic lock Opeta Palepoi who crashed over for a last gasp try.  O'Hagan converted but it wasn't enough to win the RBS Premiership and the trophy was sent a few miles down the road to Melrose.

Final score: Gala 33 Ayr 34.

-Elena Hogarth.

Friday, 21 March 2014

Gala v Ayr preview

Ayr head to the Borders tomorrow for their penultimate match of the season knowing they will be up against a ferociously determined Gala who will be going all-out for the league title.

The last time the two sides met, it was a victory for Gala at Millbrae, so it would be tempting to suggest that revenge will be on the minds of the men in pink and black, but Ayr head coach Peter Laverie says the pressure is off his team.

"We'll play our brand of rugby and see what happens. It could be an interesting game.  If Gala win, they will have earned the title and you can never argue with a completed league table."

He continues: "On their home turf, the Netherdale men must start as favourites and remember they have already beaten us this season in what was a very physical match at Millbrae.  George (Graham, Gala head coach) has his team working hard, so we expect a difficult encounter."

Ayr's team is bolstered by the welcome return of James Eddie, who had been released by Glasgow Warriors.  D'arcy Rae is back from Scotland under-20s duty and makes up a powerful yet mobile front row alongside Fergus Scott and Denford Mutamangira.

In the backs, Ross Curle starts at outside centre, meaning Robbie Fergusson again moves to right wing, as he did for last week's heartening win over Glasgow Hawks. 

Craig Gossman has recovered from the head knock he sustained playing for the Scotland Club XV a fortnight ago and takes his place on a strong bench.


15. Grant Anderson (capt.), 14. Robbie Fergusson, 13. Ross Curle, 12. Dean Kelbrick, 11. Kerr Gossman; 10. Finn Russell, 9. Murray McConnell; 1. Denford Mutamangira, 2. Fergus Scott, 3. D'arcy Rae; 4. Callum Templeton, 5. Scott Sutherland; 6. James Eddie, 7. Andrew Dunlop, 8. Peter McCallum.


16. Stuart Fenwick, 17. Gordon Sykes, 18. Graham Fisken, 19. Peter Jericevich, 20. Craig Gossman.

Kick-off 3pm.

Live score updates will be available via Twitter.

Thursday, 20 March 2014

Glasgow Warriors tickets for this Saturday

Ten tickets for this Saturday's RaboDirect Pro12 game between Glasgow Warriors and Llanelli Scarlets will be placed behind the bar in the clubhouse this evening (Thursday) and will be available on a first-come-first-serve basis.

The tickets were kindly gifted to the club after their age grade achievements and these remaining ten are available.  Angus Bunten has another five tickets and if any late-comers would like them, give him a call on 07772935777.

Wednesday, 19 March 2014

Tait and Paxton make U16s squad

Following a trial at Lochinch on Sunday, the Scotland under-16 squad has been selected and two Ayr players, Aaron Tait and Gregor Paxton, have been included.

Two further training weekends will be held this month before a training match against Newcastle Falcons under-16s on Sunday 30th March ahead of the Wellington Festival in April.

Read the full story here.

Sunday, 16 March 2014

U15s win league in good weekend for youngsters

Ayr under-15s beat GHA 20-10 on Sunday, joining the under-16s and under-18s as league winners, the first time all age grades have won their own leagues.

The under-16s were also in action on Sunday, beating Marr 20-12 to progress to the West Cup semi-final. Twenty-four hours earlier, the under-18s also made the semi-finals of their West Cup campaign when they beat Whitecraigs 14-12.

The P4s, P5s, P6s and P&s had a very successful Sunday too, all winning their age group competitions at the Dumfries Tournament.

Well done to all the players and coaches involved in the under-15s league success and best of luck to the under-16s and -18s for their respective semi-finals!

Saturday, 15 March 2014

Ayr 32 Glasgow Hawks 7

Ayr let loose in their final home game of the season and scored five exciting tries to put their old foes Glasgow Hawks to the sword under the floodlights at Millbrae.

There's always an added edge to matches between the two sides, but the visitors were lacking their usual sharp talons and Ayr had them pinned in their own half and under pressure from the get-go.  Number eight Peter McCallum was the first to power on for Hawks' line but their defence stopped him in time.

Hawks had their chance to move things on after a throw at the Ayr line-out by Dougie Hall was judged not straight.  But the following kick from the back of the scrum was charged down by Ayr and scrum-half Murray McConnell scooped up the ball and barrelled his way back into Hawks' 22.  Alas, it came to nothing.

The visitors again had some good possession and a couple of line-outs but they were still in their own half and it wasn't long before the ball found its way into Ayr hands.  Winger Robbie Fergusson flew up the touchline and just managed to chip ahead before he was barged off the pitch.  McCallum followed the bobbling ball over the line and touched down for Ayr's first try.  Finn Russell converted.  7-0.
A few minutes later and the home side secured another turnover and outside centre Mark Bennett seemed to stroll through the Hawks defence before passing on to a very lively Kerr Gossman who put inside centre Dean Kelbrick over for the second try.  Russell couldn't manage the wide conversion.  12-0.

Ayr continued to pile on the pressure but Hawks held on and put in some huge tackles, centre Ally MacLay laying out Bennett with a thud that could be heard in the stand.  Ayr put in their fair share of big hits too, with Bennett none the worse for being on the receiving end.  He was joined in defence by Hall, McConnell, Russell and props Stuart Fenwick and Denford Mutamangira, the latter leaving bodies spread-eagled all over the pitch in his wake.

There were some handling errors from both sides but Ayr were the steadier throughout, Russell in particular deftly flipping the ball to his team-mates on a couple of occasions.  He managed to release Gossman who set off on a zig-zag through the defence before offloading to Bennett, whose chip ahead was safely gathered up by Hawks.

A few minutes later and Ayr set off on a powerful drive from a line-out and trundled their way over the line, Fenwick emerging as the try-scorer.  Despite a slip in his run-up, Russell got the conversion.  19-0.

Hawks couldn't get their attack going, a strong run from winger Robbie Houliston their only highlight but he was dragged into touch by his namesake Fergusson.

McCallum was on fine form all match and showed his versatility all over the park, an acrobatic leap to tidy up a messy line-out one memorable moment.  Gossman too had a good game and set off on another mazy run that baffled the Hawks defence.

The next chance for a score was a high kick in Hawks' 22 from Russell but their defenders beat flanker Andrew Dunlop to it.

A small scuffle ensued and Ayr ended up with a penalty in front of the posts which Russell duly booted over.  22-0.

There were a few more attacks led by McConnell, Mutamangira and flanker Callum Templeton before half-time but they got nowhere.

The second half continued in much the same fashion but Ayr got the upper hand at the line-out with Al Kellock proving, as expected, an intimidating presence on his return from injury.  His second row partner Scott Sutherland also had some great takes. 

Hawks were losing the plot slightly with kicks going awry and tempers flared up again and captains Grant Anderson and Andy Linton were given a lecture by referee Graham Wells. 

A break from Kelbrick took Ayr into a good position and another solid line-out got things moving to the far corner where Bennett bounced over for a try.  Russell's conversion was short.  27-0.

There was a short delay as a Hawks replacement back was carried off the pitch after he injured himself attempting to tackle Mutamangira in the run-up to the try.

Hawks had a penalty and took the line-out but were out-jumped by Ayr and yet again Russell got his hands on the ball and kicked on for Gossman to chase but he just couldn't pick up and Hawks got the scrum for the knock-on.  But Ayr managed a tremendous shove and McConnell snaffled the ball.  Dunlop charged for the line but Hawks' defenders bundled him up.

The visitors gathered themselves together and some strong running from centre Tom Steven moved them out of their own half and scrum-half Paddy Boyer plunged for the tryline only to be held up.

They tried once more to get through Ayr's defence, this time chipping on but it was gathered by Gossman who shrugged off the tackles and skipped his way out of his own half.

A couple of infrigements from Ayr gave Hawks a glimmer of hope but they again couldn't do anything with the advantage, the ball this time squirting out of an attacking scrum and being safely kicked away by Ayr replacement scrum-half Peter Jericevich.

Russell produced another great flick pass to Templeton once Ayr had got themselves settled in Hawks' half and the rangy flanker set off at a canter, brilliantly offloading to Jericevich who flew over for a much enjoyed try.  Russell's conversion attempt skidded away to the side.  32-0.

Credit must be paid to Hawks for not giving up and they launched one last attack, with Houliston eventually crashing over for a converted try.  32-7.

They set off again but Templeton showed great speed to swoop on to the Hawks attack and snuff it out.  Jericevich and Gossman displayed their creativity and pace but the ball went loose and the referee blew the whistle to bring to an end a very entertaining match, from an Ayr perspective at least.

Denford Mutamangira was named man of the match.

Final score: Ayr 32 Glasgow Hawks 7.

- Elena Hogarth.

All photos courtesy of Rob Hardie of Touchline Images.

Friday, 14 March 2014

Ayr v Glasgow Hawks preview

It's Ayr's last home game of the season tonight as they welcome close rivals Glasgow Hawks to Millbrae and they will have a few Glasgow Warriors pulling on the pink and black shirt to help their cause.

With no Rabo Direct Pro12 games this weekend, hooker Dougie Hall, former Ayr and Cumnock player Mark Bennett and Warriors' iconic captain Al Kellock will be running out under the Friday night lights in Alloway.  Hawks will have recent Scotland cap Chris Fusaro in their starting line-up and Ayr will see the return of Finn Russell, who has impressed in several games for the Warriors in the last few weeks.

Ayr head coach Peter Laverie is, as always, looking forward to a keenly contested encounter between the two best teams in the west.

"The sides know each other well and there is always the added edge of local rivalry.  Both teams like to play rugby so it should be an entertaining affair for the supporters and well worth seeing on a Friday night before the rigours of three Six Nations matches on Saturday."

Of course, it was only a few weeks ago that Hawks propelled themselves into the semi-finals of the RBS Cup by beating Ayr, so this is a chance for a little retribution, but Laverie is more concerned about the rest of the season.

"For Ayr, a good performance will set us up nicely for the remainder of the league programme."

As well as the inclusion of the Warriors, other changes include Robbie Fergusson moving on to the wing in place of Craig Gossman, who took at knock to the head playing for the Scotland Club XV last week.  Veteran prop Gordon Sykes makes yet another come-back to take his place on a dynamic bench.


15. Grant Anderson (capt.), 14. Robbie Fergusson, 13. Mark Bennett, 12. Dean Kelbrick, 11. Kerr Gossman; 10. Finn Russell, 9. Murray McConnell; 1. Denford Mutamangira, 2. Dougie Hall, 3. Stuart Fenwick; 4. Al Kellock, 5. Scott Sutherland; 6. Callum Templeton, 7. Andrew Dunlop, 8. Peter McCallum.


16. Fergus Scott, 17. Gordon Sykes, 18. Craig Brown, 19. Peter Jericevich, 20. Ross Curle.

Kick-off 7.30pm!

Thursday, 13 March 2014

Emily and Lisa selected for Scotland U20s

Ayr Ladies' Emily Irving and Lisa Croniken have been named in the Scotland Women under-20s squad for their match against Belgium on Saturday.

Emily won her first senior cap in Scotland Women's defeat to Italy last month and she and Lisa have been the leading lights for Ayr Ladies seniors and under-18s.

The match kicks off at 2pm at Peffermill.

Good luck to the girls!

Wednesday, 12 March 2014

Rae and Malcolm in U20s Six Nations finale

Ayr front row duo D'arcy Rae and James Malcolm again start for Scotland under-20s in their final tie of the Six Nations.

It's been a tough tournament for the side but they'll be hoping to build on their narrow defeat to France last week as they take on Wales at Colwyn Bay on Friday.

All the best to D'arcy and James and their team-mates!

Read the full story here.

Monday, 10 March 2014

U18s girls win semi-final

Ayr Ladies under-18s travelled to Stornoway for the Brewin Dolphin Girls Cup semi-final and came away with a terrific 35-12 victory over the Nicolson Institute/Stornoway RFC. 

They will face Murrayfield Wanderers in the final on Sunday 30th March.

Well done to the girls!

Manning, Paxton and Tait at national U16 trial

Ayr youngsters Michael Manning, Gregor Paxton and Aaron Tait have been invited to a Scotland under-16 trial on Sunday at Lochinch.

The trio will join forty-two other young players at a training and skills session, followed by a full game.

Well done to Michael, Gregor and Aaron on their selection and good luck for the day!

Read the full story here.

Sunday, 9 March 2014

Peter Laverie to step down at the end of the season

After five years I will be stepping down as coach of Ayr RFC at the end of the season.  It has been a marvellous experience and an adventure during that period with notable successes in the Scottish Cup, the British and Irish Cup including a quarter-final against Bristol and, of course, last season's double.

There has been a massive commitment involved in terms of time, travel and challenges and for me it is the right time to scale that down a bit.  It has been very satisfying to watch players develop and fulfill their potential, not just senior players but those in our busy youth section.   The setting up and running of the Academy has been very worthwhile and there is a lot of playing talent at the club.  I fully expect Finn Russell and Fergus Scott to shine in the professional game and of course hope that players such as Robbie Fergusson, Murray McConnell and Callum Templeton get their chance too.

There are others to follow and I wish them every success in the future.  In the meantime there is a league programme to finish and we may have an important hand to play in the outcomes at the top and bottom. 

From the club's perspective it is important to let everyone know now and the club will be announcing its new coaching team for next season in due course. After a short but well-earned break I will be coaching again but there is some golf to be played first.

Peter Laverie

Thursday, 6 March 2014

Hunter on loan to London Scottish

George Hunter will spend the rest of the season with London Scottish after Glasgow Warriors announced his loan to the English Championship side today.

The young prop is an Elite Development player with the Warriors but has spent the last couple of seasons pulling on the pink and black of Ayr.

We wish him all the best with London Scottish.

Read the full story here.

Wednesday, 5 March 2014

Rae and Malcolm to start for Scotland U20s

Ayr's young front row stars D'arcy Rae and James Malcolm have been named at prop and hooker respectively for the Scotland under-20s team that will face their French counterparts on Friday evening at Netherdale.

The rambunctious duo has been promoted from the bench in a number of changes to the team that was defeated by the Italian under-20s two weeks ago.

Good luck to both D'arcy and James and their team-mates!

Read the full story here.

Tuesday, 4 March 2014

Four Ayr players in Club XV squad

Scotland Club XV take on France Federale on Friday night at Old Anniesland and four Ayr players have been named in the squad.

Winger Craig Gossman and hooker Fergus Scott start, whilst second row Callum Templeton and scrum-half Peter Jericevich are on the bench.

The match kicks off at 7.30pm and is free to attend.

Best of luck to all!

Read the full story here.

Monday, 3 March 2014

Lewis Anderson in Scotland U18s squad

Ayr youngster Lewis Anderson has been named in the Scotland under-18s squad to face their England counterparts on Sunday.

Lewis has already played for the under-18s this season in their match against a Scotland under-18s Districts side a fortnight ago.

The game against England is due to take place at Hamilton RFC, depending on a pitch inspection tomorrow.

Read the full story here.

Ladies' Lunch raises £1015 for charity

It was a good afternoon on the pitch at Millbrae on Saturday, but it was a great day in the clubhouse with the Ladies' Lunch raising £1015 for Renal Cancer Research.

The lunch was attended by 180 ladies and organised down to the last detail by Ayr RFC's social co-ordinator Eilidh Rankin, with the generous guests raising the fantastic sum for the club's chosen charity.

Thanks to everyone who attended and Eilidh and friends for all their hard work.

Sunday, 2 March 2014

Ayr 22 Edinburgh Accies 11

Ayr scored four tries to overcome Edinburgh Accies at Millbrae on Saturday afternoon and secure a bonus point in the RBS Premiership.
The home side got off to a roaring start with a try scored by winger Kerr Gossman with barely a minute on the clock.  It was a blink-and-miss-it score from Gossman the younger, who flew up the wing whilst most of the fans were still settling into their seats.  Ross Curle's conversion attempt hung in the air before floating away to the side of the posts.  5-0.

It wasn't long before Gossman the elder, Craig, looked like he was going to fly over the line for another try but fresh-faced referee Sam Grove-White called him back for an infringement.

Edinburgh Accies settled down with a couple of lineouts and a scrum but again the elder Gossman was proving a thorn in their side, chasing off after a loose ball with outside centre Robbie Fergusson in support.  Accies managed to secure it.

However, Gossman was clearly determined to get on the score sheet, and minutes later he managed to cross the whitewash after solid handling from inside centre Dean Kelbrick and lock Scott Sutherland released him.  Curle's conversion again drifted wide.  10-0.
Ayr continued to apply pressure but a loose pass from scrum-half Peter Jericevich allowed the visitors to launch their first sustained attack, which eventually came to nothing.  Ayr started to give away penalties, but so did Accies and when their lock Jamie McCarthy galloped away to the tryline, it was his team's indiscipline that brought him back for an Ayr scrum.
Despite good attacking and defensive efforts from prop Denford Mutamangira and Kerr Gossman respectively, Accies clawed their way back into the game and stand-off Alex Blair crossed for a try in the second quarter.  Scrum-half Alex Black couldn't convert.  10-5.
A few minutes later, Black had another kick at goal, this time a penalty, which sailed over the crossbar.  10-8.
With just two points in it, both sides seemed a bit anxious.  Accies were making some handling errors and they still couldn't contain either Gossman, with Craig collecting his own chip-kick and racing off.  Fortunately for Accies, they managed a turnover before he could cause any further damage, but again they couldn't do anything with it.
The first half finished with the home team and visitors having been pinged by the referee several times.
Edinburgh Accies took to the field with renewed purpose for the second half, putting Ayr's scrum under considerable pressure but Ayr number eight Peter McCallum managed to scoop the ball up before the visitors could get their paws on it.

Black had a chance at forty-two minutes to put Accies in front but he missed the penalty kick.  It didn't seem to affect them, as they went for Ayr's line but couldn't get over.

Their cause was helped at around fifty minutes as Ayr went down to fourteen men when Mutamangira found himself yellow-carded.  Accies winger Nyle Godsmark wriggled his way through a few tackles but couldn't get anywhere.

Ayr's scrum held well with only seven men (flanker Andrew Dunlop made way for veteran prop Gordon Sykes to come on in the front row) but as the match approached the final quarter, Black slotted another penalty.  10-11.
Accies looked to push on and run the ball from their own half via winger Chris Dean, who slipped tackles to charge to nearly the half-way line.  But somehow the ball ended up in the hands of Ayr replacement scrum-half Murray McConnell and before anyone could do anything, he was off like a rocket up the touchline, the Millbrae faithful screaming him on in delight.  He finished with a flourish, swan-diving over the line.  Curle's conversion from outwide was short.  15-11.
Ayr knuckled down to some serious attacking play in the final ten minutes, with full-back Grant Anderson, Mutamangira and McCallum going for the line.  It was Sutherland who eventually powered over for the fourth try and the bonus point.  Curle converted.  22-11.
More attacks were launched by both sides but it all got a bit scrappy.  Anderson, both Gossmans and later replacement winger Danny McCluskey were bobbing about but a further score eluded them and what looked like a try for Edinburgh Accies wasn't given by the referee, who then blew the whistle for full time.
Final score: Ayr 22  Edinburgh Accies 11
- Elena Hogarth.