Tuesday, 28 April 2015

Successful weekend for U15 boys' teams

Ayr's under-15 boys had a good weekend in Northumberland and closer to home.

The first XV beat Northumberland District under-15s 14-12 in a terrific match at Blythe, near Newcastle.

On Saturday, the second XV won the Dalziel/Strathaven tournament after coming through all of their games unbeaten.
Ayr U15s coach Paul Honthy is understandably proud of his young charges' efforts.

"The boys were fantastic all weekend, and beating a county district was a tremendous achievement."

A huge well done to all players from both teams!

Monday, 27 April 2015

Dean wins April POTM

Ayr's retiring captain Dean Kelbrick has topped April's player of the month poll with 20% of the vote.

It's a fitting send-off for Dean, who hangs up his rugby boots after three years with Ayr.  He captained Ayr throughout the 2014/15 season and was an integral part of the team that won the premiership and cup double in 2012/13.

We hope to see him on the touchline cheering on his old team-mates next season and wish him all the best for the future!

Thursday, 23 April 2015

Horne and Parks visit Ayr P7s

Scotland and Glasgow Warriors' Peter Horne travelled down to a sunny Millbrae yesterday evening with Dan Parks in tow to put Ayr's primary seven age group through their paces.

The youngsters were all ears as Scotland's international latest stand-off and one of the legends of the game passed on advice and encouragement to the club's future stars.

Picture @Petehorne72

Tuesday, 21 April 2015

April 2015 POTM poll open!

It's the final player of the month poll of the season, and as there has only been one BT Premiership match in April, the full squad from the Melrose Sevens has been included too.

The vote closes on Monday at 1pm and the winner will be announced shortly after.  

Vote here!  

Monday, 20 April 2015

Ayr U16s 33 West of Scotland U16s 15

Ayr under-16s capped a successful season with a victory over West of Scotland under-16s in an entertaining West Regional Cup final at Millbrae on Sunday.

In front of a large and enthusiastic crowd, Ayr gained an early penalty when West failed to roll away.  They opted for the line-out and the neon ball was kicked into a tree in the Burns Museum garden and remained trapped in the branches like a radioactive egg until some intrepid soul released it.

Shortly after, Ayr got the first points on the board with a penalty by stand-off Matt Davidson.  3-0.

West's speedy backs were causing all sorts of trouble until Ayr left wing Jack Harris clung on to a red and yellow shirt by his fingertips to drag down the attacker.  

Ayr got themselves into difficulty in their own twenty-two by infringing at the scrum and straying offside but some tenacious defence prevented the visitors from finding their way to the try-line.  It got worse for Ayr when lock David Kerr was yellow carded.  West went for the line again but a double movement was called by the referee and no score given.

A couple of solid line-outs from the home team gave them a good attacking platform and outside centre Harry Lynch shot through the defence to score an excellent try.  Davidson's conversion attempt hit the post.  8-0.

West again were quick but Ayr scrum-half Cameron Black and second row Logan Richardson put in some good tackles.  Ayr regained possession and a chip-and-chase from Davidson and outside centre Calum Gaw pushed them right up to West's try-line but they couldn't quite make it.

It was hooker and captain Stuart Collier's turn to charge for the line, with Davidson, Gaw and inside centre Harry Lynch in support but the ball was knocked on.  They didn't have long to wait for another chance though as right wing Rory McMurray flew away with the ball and sped over the line for a try.  Davidson converted.  18-0.

West had their first opportunity for points after Ayr were pinged for offside but the kick went wide.

Things got a bit frantic towards the end of the first half with errors from both teams, but full-back James Baird and flankers Euan Hamilton and Robbie Nicol were on the charge.  West's defence was good though and they managed to nab the ball only for Gaw to intercept and release Baird to scamper away for an unconverted try.  23-0.

The visitors quickly got on the scoreboard at the start of the second half with a penalty.  23-3.

They then set off on some promising runs, but Nicol and prop Jack McDougall were on hand to stop them.  Black poached a pass and number eight Cameron Reece, McDougall and McMurray combined to get into West's half.

West quickly took advantage of Ayr being offside and their right wing took off, batting away the Ayr defenders.  Ayr turned over though but their kick was caught and West pressed for the line.  They were just short but the ensuing scrum gave them another shot and their right wing sped over for an unconverted try.  23-8.

Ayr's backs got a good run around, with replacement Adam White barging his way through the defence, but West were determined not to let them get anywhere near the line.  They were solid at the set pieces too, twice stealing Ayr's line-out.

Gaw had another break when Ayr regained possession but it came to nothing and West fancied their chances of a counter attack.  Their cause was helped when Ayr replacement Patrick McCahill was sin-binned and couple of penalties followed.  West found the gap and got another try, which was converted.  23-15.

The visitors' tails were up but they gave away a penalty.  It was a long shot, but Davidson stepped up to the tee.  He had the distance but it was wide.  However, several West players moved during his run-up and he was allowed another strike, which went over the crossbar.  26-15.

West had their own shot at goal moments later but it was unsuccessful.  Nevertheless, they continued to threaten with ball in hand but a stray pass was pounced on by Davidson and he raced away for a try, which he converted himself.  33-15.

There was just enough time for both sides to attempt to get to each other's try-line but the referee brought the exciting second half to an end to hand the trophy to Ayr.  

Final score: Ayr U16s 33 West of Scotland 15.

- Eléna Hogarth.

Saturday, 18 April 2015

Ayr Ladies 17 Stewartry Sirens 36

Ayr Ladies put on a determined display against Stewartry Sirens at a sunny BT Murrayfield in the BT Plate final, but couldn't get past their south-west rivals, who flew away with the win in the second half.

It started well for Ayr, as a chip ahead bobbled nicely over Stewartry's try-line but the Sirens' defenders beat the attackers to it.  From a strong scrum, Ayr's stand-off Rachael Mulholland, outside centre Laura Turner and left wing Daryl Paterson moved the ball quickly but they were turned over and the Sirens worked their way out of their own half.

Ayr captain Gemma Swankie, along with fellow prop Louise McLauchlan, got stuck into some thumping tackles and they eventually got the penalty.  Mulholland shot away into Stewartry's half but couldn't quite make it to the line.  Ayr were patient and blindside flanker Eilidh Thomson fought her way over for a try.  Right wing Catherine Shennan couldn't manage the wide conversion.  5-0.

As well as a strong pack, Stewartry had some lively backs and they quickly raced up to Ayr's five-metre line.  Despite strong defence from Swankie and hooker Megan Thomson, Sirens' number eight Ali Henderson was bundled over for an unconverted try.  5-5.

Ayr were dealt a blow when try-scorer Eilidh Thomson had to leave the field with a knee injury.

A thirty-metre break from Turner gave the travelling support something to cheer about but it was later knocked on.  A solid Stewartry scrum let their backs loose but Ayr inside centre, and recent Scotland under-20s cap, Lisa Croniken was doughty in defence and with Mulholland and number eight Lynda Morgan, shoved them into touch.  

Ayr secured the line-out and lock Ashleigh Nelson and Mulholland showed great hands to fire the ball on.  But they couldn't get past the Sirens' powerful forwards and before long, they were getting pushed around at the scrum.  Some determined tackling from Paterson, Nelson, Croniken and openside flanker Laura Sommerville kept the Sirens away from the try-line.

But not for long.  Another huge shove at an Ayr scrum got the Sirens the ball and again Henderson pounced for an unconverted try.  5-10.

Ayr held firm at their next scrum to get their confidence back and began to put the Sirens under pressure at their put-in.  A couple of turn-overs for both teams followed, and Ayr's poaching got them out of their own half.  Megan Thomson sold a brilliant dummy to release Croniken, who couldn't be brought down by the defenders, and she fired the ball to Paterson, but she was bundled into touch.  

Ayr camped out in the Sirens' twenty-two, with Morgan pressing for the line.  Full-back Ann-Marie Connelly took a high ball well and charged into the defence, managing to offload to Turner.  A penalty followed and scrum-half Niamh Durnan raced away with terrific support from her forwards.  It was Croniken who blasted her way over for the try.  Replacement Jackie O'Neil just missed the conversion.  10-10.

The ladies in pink and black pressed on, with another break from Croniken, who had Swankie and Sommerville in support, but the Sirens turned it over.  A couple of sturdy Stewartry scrums followed and right wing Hannah Sloan flew away from her own half to shoot up the touchline and touch down under the posts.  Left wing Kirsty McCleary slotted the conversion.  10-17.

The second half began with some good attacking play from Swankie, Turner, Nelson, Morgan, Durnan and lock Zoe Montgomerie.  But again they struggled to contain the Sirens' marauding forwards, even though Swankie was putting in some particularly effective tackles.

Sloan was a thorn in Ayr's side though and she repeated her feat from the end of the first half, with McCleary again getting the conversion directly in front of the posts.  10-24.

Ayr didn't let their heads go down though, with Connelly and O'Neil doing superbly in defence and attack respectively.  A great catch from Shennan was taken on by Turner and Nelson but Ayr were pinged for holding on just on Stewartry's five-metre line.  

Sloan was away again but this time Paterson stopped her in her tracks.  The Sirens carried on into Ayr's half and after a sustained period of pressure, full-back Jo Steel went over for an unconverted try.  10-29.

Croniken impressively handed off several defenders to get back in the Sirens' half.  Good work from McLauchlan, Morgan and Turner got them over the line but they were held up.  Moments later and, from a strong Ayr scrum, Croniken grabbed Ayr's third try.  It was a tricky conversion but O'Neil struck it perfectly.  17-29.

Shennan, Mulholland, Croniken and Morgan were speedy in attack but a forward pass was thrown to hand back possession to the Sirens.  Turner and Paterson combined to drag down yet another Stewartry flier, and Durnan put in an enormous tackle, but again Sloan took off and nobody could get near her.  McCleary converted.  17-36.

Ayr replacements Lindsay Dick and Rachel Morrison provided fresh legs to chase down the Sirens, and when Ayr regained possession, Swankie set off on an exciting charge up the wing, but she was hauled into touch.

They stayed strong at the line-out, but Stewartry put them under intense pressure at the scrum and it looked like the ladies in dark pink would finish with another try until the Ayr defenders dragged their attacker off the pitch.

Time was up and the referee blew the whistle, sending the BT Plate to Castle Douglas.  It was a difficult afternoon for Ayr Ladies, but the players and coaches, and friends and families who have supported them, can be proud of yet another season full of positives.

Final score: Ayr Ladies 17 Stewartry Sirens 36.

15. Ann-Marie Connelly; 14. Catherine Shennan, 13. Laura Turner, 12. Lisa Croniken, 11. Daryl Paterson; 10. Rachael Mulholland, 9. Niamh Durnan; 1. Louise McLauchlan, 2. Megan Thomson, 3. Gemma Swankie (c); 4. Ashleigh Nelson, 5. Zoe Montgomerie; 6. Eilidh Thomson, 7. Laura Sommerville, 8. Lynda Morgan.

16. Lindsay Dick, 17. Stacy Wight, 18. Jackie O'Neil, 19. Sarah Paterson, 20. Lisa Main, 21. Phoebe McDowell, 22. Rachel Morrison.

15. Jo Steel; 14. Hannah Sloan, 13. Chloe Johnstone, 12. Jenny Yates, 11. Kirsty McCleary; 10. Clare Manson, 9. Charlotte Bray; 1. Suzy Kirkpartrick, 2. Polly Day (c), 3. Shannon Nicolson; 4. Andrea Savile, 5. Petrina Sidebottom; 6. Dawn Currie, 7. Sammy Durnan, 8. Ali Henderson.

16. Mary Cameron, 17. Debs Swan, 18. Fiona Shedden, 19. Lorna Tracey, 20. Jo White.

- Eléna Hogarth.

Friday, 17 April 2015

Ayr Ladies v Stewartry Sirens - BT Plate final preview

Saturday marks the biggest day so far in the short history of Ayr Ladies as they travel to BT Murrayfield for Finals Day to take on close rivals Stewartry Sirens in the BT Women's Plate final.

These two south-west sides are no strangers to each other.  The Sirens were one of the first teams to play Ayr in friendly matches when the women's section of the club took off three seasons ago.  They have competed in the same league for the past two years and were both promoted into the BT Women's National League Division 1 this season, with Stewartry finishing second and Ayr third.

After just being pipped to the BT Women's Bowl by Broughton this time last year, the ladies in pink and black are more than eager to beat Stewartry Sirens and bring home their first silverware to Millbrae.

Preparations have included a joint training session at Hughenden with Hillhead/Jordanhill Ladies, who take on Murrayfield Wanderers in the Sarah Beaney Cup final on Saturday, and Ayr Ladies head coach Stuart Fenwick has increased the time the squad has been spending together.

"We've had extra sessions in recent weeks to make sure the team is well organised and everyone knows their role for Saturday."

It will be a very close encounter, but whatever the outcome, Fenwick is proud of his team's efforts this season.

"The Ladies have done really well coming into an unknown league where we weren't familiar with all the other teams.  Our aim was to be competitive and the players have really stepped up in training and enjoyed it.  We'll be pushing on next season."

The travelling support will be out in force to cheer on Ayr Ladies at Murrayfield and everyone at Millbrae wishes them the very best of luck.

15. Ann-Marie Connelly; 14. Catherine Shennan, 13. Laura Turner, 12. Lisa Croniken, 11. Daryl Paterson; 10. Rachael Mulholland, 9. Niamh Durnan; 1. Louise McLauchlan, 2. Megan Thomson, 3. Gemma Swankie (c); 4. Ashleigh Nelson, 5. Zoe Montgomerie; 6. Eilidh Thomson, 7. Laura Sommerville, 8. Lynda Morgan.

16. Lindsay Dick, 17. Stacy Wight, 18. Jackie O'Neil, 19. Sarah Paterson, 20. Lisa Main, 21. Phoebe McDowall, 22. Rachel Morrison.

Kick-off 12pm!

Monday, 13 April 2015

Ayr make second round at Melrose 7s

It was a cold but sunny day at the Greenyards on Saturday as teams gathered for the world-famous Melrose Sevens.

Ayr started their campaign against Stewart's Melville and got off to a flier.  Blair Macpherson sauntered over for the first try which was converted by recent Scotland Sevens cap Gavin Lowe.  

Cammy Taylor then flew over the line, with Robbie Fergusson adding the extra two points.  Iain Renwick got a brace of tries, one of which was converted by Fergusson, to seal the win.  26-7.
Ayr next faced something of an unknown quantity in the German national sevens team.  It began well with an unconverted try by Taylor, but the game was halted for some time when Germany's Marvin Dieckmann was attended to by both medical teams.  He was stretchered off and we wish him a speedy recovery.

Germany showed some great pace and flare to run in a number of tries and Ayr could do nothing to stop the eventual tournament runners-up crossing the whitewash.  Fabian Heimpel also struck several impressive conversions.
There was some consolation for Ayr as Pete McCallum scored a final unconverted try from a David Armstrong break.  10-24.

Glasgow Warriors beat Germany in an entertaining final.  James Eddie led the professional side, with Ayr's Murray McConnell and Will Bordill amongst the squad and both got on the score sheet.

Ayr: 1. Dean Kelbrick (c), 2. Blair Macpherson, 3 Pete McCallum, 4. Ben Johnston, 5. David Armstrong, 6. Iain Renwick, 7. Gavin Lowe, 8. Robbie Fergusson, 9. Cammy Taylor, 10. Gregor Paxton.

- Eléna Hogarth

Friday, 10 April 2015

Melrose 7s squad

Ayr head back to the Borders tomorrow, but this time they will be lacing up their boots for the legendary Melrose Sevens at the Greenyards.

They face Stewart's Melville in the preliminary round and should they get past them, they will then line up against the German national team in round one.

As well as Germany, the other guest teams are Wasps, North West University from South Africa and Glasgow Warriors, who will have a couple of familiar faces in their team in the shape of Murray McConnell and Will Bordill.


1. Dean Kelbrick, 2. Blair Macpherson, 3. Pete McCallum, 4. Ben Johnston, 5. David Armstrong, 6. Iain Renwick, 7. Gavin Lowe, 8. Robbie Fergusson, 9. Cammy Taylor, 10. Gregor Paxton.

Thursday, 9 April 2015

D'arcy on loan to London Scottish

Ayr's young prop D'arcy Rae is off on his travels again, this time heading to Richmond to play for London Scottish until the end of the season.

The twenty-year-old, who recently secured his first professional contract with Glasgow Warriors, spent some time on loan to Bennetton Treviso in the Pro12 earlier in the year and started for Ayr in our final match of the season last weekend.

We wish him all the best for his time in Richmond!

Read the full story from London Scottish here.

Wednesday, 8 April 2015

Support Ayr Ladies at Murrayfield!

Everyone is looking forward to watching Ayr Ladies face Stewartry Sirens in the BT Plate final at Murrayfield on Saturday 18th April as part of Finals Day, and the pink ladies would really appreciate as much support as possible as they try to overcome their local rivals.

Tickets are £10 for adults, £5 for students and OAPs and free for children, and are available from the club.  Supporters' buses have been organised and will leave Millbrae at 9.15am on the Saturday, so we ask everyone to be at the club for 9am.  A ticket for the bus is £10.

You can drop into the clubhouse or call Colin at Millbrae on 01292 441944 to book your tickets.  Numbers must be finalised and all money paid by Friday 17th April at 4pm.

Remember to wear something pink to show your support!

Tuesday, 7 April 2015

Davidson and Gaw in Scotland U16s victory

Ayr's Matt Davidson and Calum Gaw were amongst the substitutes for Scotland U16s as they beat England North 27-19 in their opening match of the Wellington Festival on Sunday.

The young Scots have their next game on Wednesday against Wales Celts.

Read the full story from the SRU here.

Sunday, 5 April 2015

Kids' Camp this week at Millbrae

Ayr RFC's Kids' Camp will be running from Monday 6th April to Friday 10th April, 10am to 2pm, at Millbrae.

Children from P1 to S2 are welcome and it costs £10 a day or £40 for the week.

Contact Stuart Fenwick (Stuart.Fenwick@south-ayrshire.gov.uk) for more information.

Ayr 20 Melrose 22

Ayr saw a place in the BT Premiership play-off final slip from their fingers as Melrose took their revenge and claim the win by just two points.

It started well for the home team, with returning outside centre Ross Curle kicking an early penalty, roared on by the packed stand and touchlines.  3-0.

Ayr had the impetus in attack but they were pinged for holding on and Melrose took the line-out.  Openside flanker Will Bordill, hooker Dougie Hall, second row Rob McAlpine and prop D'arcy Rae put in some thumping tackles but the visitors evened things up with a penalty by Joe Helps.  3-3.

Blindside flanker Andrew Dunlop soared in the line-out for Ayr and winger Robbie Fergusson was soon flying into Melrose's twenty-two.  His neat little kick was pounced on by the opposition before he could get to it, but it was knocked on.  

Number eight Blair Macpherson picked up from the back of the ensuing scrum and resisted Melrose's defenders to get the ball away.  Scrum-half David Armstrong fired it on to Bordill, who spotted a gap but couldn't quite get through it.  Prop George Hunter was stopped short of the line before quick hands got the ball to winger Cammy Taylor who dived over in the corner for the try.  Curle missed the wide conversion.  8-3.
Bordill had a busy afternoon and he received the appreciation of the crowd for a strong tackle that drove Melrose's attacker back several metres.  The visitors seemed a bit rattled, missing a kick for the corner moments later.  They regained possession, however, and looked intent on working their way to Ayr's try-line.  Like Bordill, captain Dean Kelbrick never let up in defence all day, and along with Dunlop, tackled superbly.

There was no keeping those Borderers down though and they were quickly trundling away from a line-out, with flanker Grant Runciman grounding the ball for the try.  Helps struck the conversion perfectly.  8-10.

This put a spring in the visitors' step and they were showing off their fancy tricks with flicked passes between the legs.  It all went a bit awry though and Macpherson scooped up a loose ball and charged off.  Kelbrick burst through the defence and second row Scott Sutherland then took it on but Melrose managed to turn over and clear.

Despite an exciting break from Melrose captain Fraser Thomson, a bit of the fizz went out of the game as the sides cancelled each other out.  A huge shove from Ayr at Melrose's scrum got them the advantage and Curle flew off, but by the time he got the ball to Taylor, the winger was bundled into touch.
Melrose gave away a penalty in a kickable position but Curle couldn't get the ball between the posts.

It was the home team's turn to seem slightly unnerved and a couple of errors gave Melrose the upper hand.  But an enormous tackle from Macpherson dislodged the ball and let Curle loose.  He escaped the swarming yellow and black shirts and looked certain to get the pass to Fergusson mere metres from the try-line but just couldn't.  Hunter, Sutherland and Taylor tried to find their way over but Ayr were penalised for holding on and some ill-advised chatter saw them ordered back ten metres.

Melrose had another penalty chance just before half-time but Helps' kick was wide.

The Greenyards side launched themselves into the second half with some finely angled running from centre Tom Galbraith but the ball again went loose and Ayr's replacement hooker Fergus Scott tidied up and tried to release Taylor.  Melrose gave away a penalty and Ayr took the line-out, but the throw was deemed not straight.

Glasgow Warriors' James Eddie is always a favourite with the Ayr crowd, so there was disappointment when he had to leave the pitch injured after only a few minutes.  He was replaced by Graham Fisken.

If proof were needed just how much Melrose wanted to turn the tables on Ayr after the one-point loss at the Greenyards last week, it was provided by the bizarre wails of desperation coming out of their scrum.  But they gave away a penalty and from the line-out, Armstrong popped a perfect pass to Kelbrick who raced over for a try.  Curle converted.  15-10.
There wasn't long to wait for another Ayr try, as Curle pressed on, full-back Grant Anderson juggled and Fergusson zoomed up the wing and over the line.  The conversion angle was again too tight for Curle.  20-10.

 Two line-out steals from Ayr gave the crowd even more to cheer about, as did a great take in the air from Armstrong, even more good hands from Anderson and some smooth running from Fisken.  

A brief period of kicks and chases from both sides preceded Murray McConnell coming on for Danny McCluskey, meaning Armstrong moved to stand-off.  

Melrose had a line-out but Ayr turned over and Fergusson somehow kicked and caught almost at the same time to quickly shift the action away to the left wing where replacement back row Pete McCallum was about to dive over for a try before he was judged to have been in touch.

Ayr were determined to keep Melrose pinned in that corner and did just that with a charge down from replacement prop Stuart Fenwick.  But a later knock-on by a pink and black hand gave them the scrum and Melrose quickly moved play into Ayr's half, despite the defensive efforts of Fenwick and Armstrong.

Melrose again used the line-out to drive to the line but they didn't need to ground the ball as they were awarded the penalty try and Fisken was sent to the sin bin.  20-17.

Just minutes later, things got even worse as the ball bobbled about in Ayr's twenty-two and Melrose's Murdo McAndrew got his hands on it to cross the line unopposed for an unconverted try.  20-22.
Ayr still had time to claw back the advantage but one good piece of play was quickly followed by an error.  They dashed right and left, only to throw a forward pass.  They put Melrose under considerable pressure at the scrum and claimed the ball but knocked on before giving away a penalty at the next scrum.  They were pinged again but then stole Melrose's line-out.

The clock ticked into over-time and eventually out of time for the Millbrae men as their last ditch attempt to get to the try-line petered out.  It was an exhausting end to yet another intense encounter with a dogged Melrose side.  

With the Bill McLaren Shield handed back over, all there was left to do was wish Melrose well in the final against Heriot's on Saturday 25th April, reflect on an up-and-down season that saw Ayr finish second in the table and look forward to a well-earned rest.
Final score: Ayr 20  Melrose 22.

All photos courtesy of Rob Hardie of Touchline Images.

- Eléna Hogarth.

Saturday, 4 April 2015

Bordill in today's Herald

Ayr's young back row Will Bordill features in the sports section of today's Herald.

The 21-year-old talks to Gary Heatly about being made to feel welcome at Millbrae upon his arrival last summer and the focus ahead of this afternoon's BT Premiership play-off semi-final against Melrose.

Read the article here.

Friday, 3 April 2015

Ayr v Melrose - BT Premiership play-off semi-final preview

Ayr and Melrose go head-to-head for the second time in as many weeks, but as the action moves to Millbrae, a place in the BT Premiership play-off final is up for grabs.

Last week's narrow 14-13 win for Ayr at the Greenyards was an intense match, to say the least, and head coach Calum Forrester is rightly proud of the performance of the men in pink and black.

"At times our defence was immense and this kept us in the game against a very strong Melrose attack.  The players' attitude and commitment were outstanding and we will need the same again for eighty minutes this week against a Melrose team who will be hurting and entirely focused on coming to Ayr to do a job."

The Borderers are captained by stalwart Fraser Thomson and feature an exceptionally speedy backline, with winger Tito Mua particularly dangerous with ball in hand.  Nick Beavon will bring all his experience and scrumming nous to the front row and exciting young back row player Hugh Blake, who featured briefly in Vern Cotter's Six Nations squad, takes his place at blindside flanker.

Ayr's squad is yet again bolstered by the presence of Glasgow Warriors' Dougie Hall, who starts at hooker this week, James Eddie and Murray McConnell, who are amongst the extended list of replacements.

Centre Ross Curle returns to the fold after serving a suspension, meaning March player of the month Robbie Fergusson moves to the wing.  Young prop D'arcy Rae is welcomed back after a spell on loan to Pro12 side Treviso and comes in for the injured Fraser Watt.

It's sure to be another thrilling encounter between these old rivals and Forrester and his players can't wait to give the fans something to cheer about.

"We are looking forward to being at Millbrae in front of what I am sure will be a very vocal home support.  It is just reward for the supporters who have followed us home and away the entire season."

15. Grant Anderson; 14. Robbie Fergusson, 13. Ross Curle, 12. Dean Kelbrick (c), 11. Cammy Taylor; 10. Danny McCluskey, 9. David Armstrong; 1. George Hunter, 2. Dougie Hall, 3. D'arcy Rae; 4. Robert McAlpine, 5. Scott Sutherland; 6. Andrew Dunlop, 7. Will Bordill, 8. Blair Macpherson.

16. Fergus Scott, 17. Stuart Fenwick, 18. James Eddie, 19. Pete McCallum, 20. Graham Fisken, 21. Murray McConnell, 22. Kerr Gossman.

15. Fraser Thomson (c); 14. Tito Mua, 13. Tom Galbraith, 12. Andrew Nagle, 11. Bruce Colvine; 10. Austin Lockington, 9. Murdo McAndrew; 1. Nick Beavon, 2. Todd Pearce, 3. Ewan McQuillin; 4. James Head, 5. Lewis Carmichael; 6. Hugh Blake, 7. Grant Runciman, 8. Graeme Dodds.

16. Richard Ferguson, 17. Nicky Little, 18. Neil Irvine-Hess, 19. Ruaridh Knott, 20. Richard Mill, 21. Joe Helps, 22. Blair Hutchison.

Kick-off 3pm!  If you can't be there to roar Ayr on, you can follow the scores live on Twitter.

Wednesday, 1 April 2015

Gaw and Davidson off to Wellington Festival

Ayr's Calum Gaw and Matt Davidson have been named in the Scotland U16 squad for the upcoming Wellington Festival.

It all kicks off this weekend, with Scotland's first game on Sunday against England North.

We wish Calum, Matt and their Scotland team-mates the best of luck!

Read the full story from the SRU here.