The University of Edinburgh Women’s Rugby Club continued their winning run over the University of St Andrews Women’s Rugby Club at BT Murrayfield earlier this afternoon, running in a total of eight tries.
It was the University of St Andrews to kick-off, and the Fife side dominated the early phases of the game. That was until the University of Edinburgh, in their first touches of the ball, worked their way into their opposition’s 22 before number eight Sally Scott crossed the whitewash. The try was converted by Scotland Women 7s player Meryl Smith to make it 7-0 after five minutes.
St Andrews then looked to hit back, aiming to use the ball out wide, but it wasn’t long before they were standing under their sticks once more, when good hands saw centre Ciara McCulloch dive over in the ninth minute. Smith added the extras to double her side’s tally.
Edinburgh continued to out-score the clock with a try from the restart, with Smith streaking up field to dot down, before converting her own effort, making it 21-0. The centre then added to her tally with another converted try minutes later for Edinburgh to pull further ahead.
St Andrews then managed to stem the flow of the capital club’s tries until the 20th minute when back-row Evie Gallagher crashed over from close range. Smith missed her first of the afternoon but it was still 33-0 to the local side.
Edinburgh Scott added another to her side’s rake of first-half tries with Smith converting to make it 40-0 at half-time.
Edinburgh kicked off in the second period, and St Andrews looked much better for the break, with the visiting side managing to hold the ball well, working their way into their opponent’s half with some good handling. A knock-on killed the attack but a free-kick at the resulting scrum won St Andrews possession back.
Having kicked for touch, the Fife university won another free-kick for an early jump in the line-out, and they once again looked to go wide but their handling let them down.
St Andrews continued their rejuvenated display, and continued to look for an opening in the Edinburgh defence, playing the majority of their rugby in the capital side’s half. It looked like had found it in the forty-fourth minute when a well worked move saw stand-off Emily Jones feed Sian McGuinness in space, but the referee spotted a knock-on and pulled play back.
Then, against the run of play, Edinburgh orchestrated a lovely end-to-end score with Scotland’s Sarah Denholm crossing at the end of the move. Captain Rachel Law converted the score, making it 47-0.
The home side then managed another try, with replacement Laura Keay finishing off some good hands to record Edinburgh’s eight try of the game. With just seconds on the clock, the leaders continued to look to add to their tally, working their way deep into the St Andrews half, but a knock-on gave possession to the Fife side with the clock in the red.
After winning the scrum, St Andrews booted the ball into the stands to give Edinburgh a resounding win in the first of the afternoon’s Varsity matches.
Player of the Match: Meryl Smith (Edinburgh)
Image caption: The University of Edinburgh Women secured a hefty win over the University of St Andrews Women at BT Murrayfield this afternoon.