Linlithgow hang on to secure vital league win at Penicuik

Linlithgow were hard-fought but deserved winners at Penicuik. (pic by Graham Black)
Linlithgow were hard-fought but deserved winners at Penicuik. (pic by Graham Black)
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Linlithgow returned from three weeks without rugby to claim an important and welcome East League 1 win at bottom of the table Penicuik.

Both teams needed points badly but it was Linlithgow, playing up the slope, who made the breakthrough when Jack Frame slotted over a penalty.

Andrew Whitelaw then had a good run into the home 22 but was stopped before the line.

While Linlithgow were on top but mistakes were hampering their progress and the home side had a chance to score a penalty but the effort went wide.

Cunningham had a good run only for the attcak to peter out but eventually the Linlithgow pressure paid off as Eric Williams went over for a try in the corner. The conversion dropped just short.

Penicuik reduced the deficit with a penalty after Linlithgow were penalised for not binding, but the Reds came and were unlucky not to score when held up on the line.

Williams then had another good run but was pushed into touch just short.

With half-time approaching Linlithgow earned another penalty when a home player wasn’t quick enough to roll away and Frame slotted the kick to make the interval score 11-3 in favour of the Reds.

The second half started badly for Linlithgow as the home side scored in the corner, the conversion being missed. However this spurred the Reds on and they enjoyed a sustained period of domination in the game.

The Reds missed two penalties with both going agonisingly wide, and a drop goal attempt went seriously wide.

It seemed as if Linlithgow would score any time and when mnore penalties followed Linlithgow chose to go for touch instead of the points.

The referee eventually lost patience with the home side’s tactics and binned one of the props, but Linlithgow were unable to take advantage of the extra man.

At 11-8 the lead was slender and it was a relief for Linlithgow when Frame increased the lead to nine points with two successive penalties.

Linlithgow should have been out of sight by this stage, but Penicuik came back with another penalty with three minutes remaining and the visitors had to defend desperately for the last two minutes as the home side camped on the Linlithgow goal line.

Eventually a hard-fought buit deserved victory was secured when the referee spotted a knock on and blew for full-time and which didn’t please the home contingent.

This Saturday Linlithgow are away to league leaders Murrayfield Wanderers.