THE top team's visit to Riverside Park to play Jed-Forest was the proverbial game of two halves.

Leading 10-7 at the break, despite playing a man short after a yellow card, Marr appeared to have a reasonable hold on the match with slight dominance in the pack, especially at the set-piece.

However things started to unravel as the home side shifted up a gear and landed three tries in quick succession, with two coming from unforced Marr errors where they lost possession and were punished by Jed’s back’s electric pace and evasive running. Going into the final five minutes, Marr trailed 29-10 but in an explosive finale Marr’s never-give-up attitude was rewarded as they added two tries and a conversion to salvage two bonus points.

Marr started well and had several good attacking opportunities but these were thwarted by solid defence and/or offloads in contact or final passes not quite going to hand. Jed were always dangerous on the counter-attack and opened the scoring following a defensive breakout. Marr countered with a try from Ross Miller who scored off a rolling maul from a close range attacking lineout. On the half hour, Liam McLoughlin added a second with a good solo effort. He latched on to a mistake by Jed, as they attacked in Marr’s half, to collect a loose ball and chip it deep into Jed territory and raced on beating their pacey defenders over a 60-metre foot race hacking on before gathering and scoring in the corner.

Jed opened the scoring in the second half as they pounced on a mistake by Marr, who were attacking close to Jed’s line, to gain possession and take play to the other end of the pitch and score a try. Over the next half hour Jed continued dominating and the Young brothers exposed and exploited any sign of a gap in Marr’s defence. Three tries were added with one of these coming from a breakout from deep defence as Marr again failed to finish off from a good attacking position and lost possession.

As the match drew to a close Marr got themselves together. Replacements Fraser Grant and Mackenzie Pearce added new energy and Grant was on the end of a scoring pass as he powered his way into the scorner to touch down. From the restart, Jed tried to close the match out but Marr’s determination was rewarded with a penalty and took play back into Jed’s half. Some frenetic but determined play followed and in a final act Marr’s Ben Johnston broke through several tackles to score the bonus point try. Liam McLoughlin converted for a losing bonus.

Marr Rugby 1st XV man of the match: Ben Johnston

The 2s had a tough day at Millbrae where they faced an Ayr side strengthened by the inclusion of several 1st XV regulars. Marr’s troops kept plugging away but were overwhelmed by Ayr’s firepower. Marr Rugby 2nd XV man of the match – Josh Evans and Ry McInnes

Marr Rugby 2nd XV scorers

Tries: Josh Evans; Jack Scott and Ry McInnes

Conversions: Rudi Marshall (2)

Tennent’s West Reserve League 1: Marr Rugby 32 – East Kilbride RFC 2s 17

At Fullarton the 3s opened their league account with a good bonus point win. Sean Fallows led Marr’s troops by example. Marr soaked up East Kilbride pressure and then took control. Thomas Watkins was in outstanding form as he outstretched the East Kilbride defence.

Marr Rugby 3rd XV man of the match – Thomas Watkins

Marr Rugby 3rd XV scorers

Tries: Thomas Watkins (3) and Shaun Fallows

Conversions: Thomas Watkins (3)

Penalties: Thomas Watkins (2)

Marr Rugby next fixtures, September 15, 1s: home v Musselburgh; 2s home v Hawick; 3s – away v Hillhead Jordanhill