It is just over a week until the annual pilgrimage to the Greenyards for the 126th Aberdeen Asset Management Melrose Sevens that takes place on Saturday 8th April.
As ever the blue-ribbon leg of the Borders Kings of the Sevens series has attracted sides from as far afield as Sweden and Western Province; as well as English side Harlequins who join the Scottish contingent of clubs vying for the title.
This Sunday, 2nd April, however, sees the Kings of the Sevens series resume at Netherdale following a long break since the Peebles 7s on 26th August last year; where Melrose got off to a winning start defeating Watsonians 22-17 in the final.
The 126th Gala 7s continues with an initial pool phase rather than a straight knockout competition and includes Plate & Bowl competitions to ensure all sides play at least three ties.
For the players; the return to playing the shortened version of the game will be a sharp reminder of how big a rugby pitch can feel with only 14 players gracing it – even if it is only for seven minutes each way!
The lactic acid build up, cramp and hamstrings dangerously close to going ‘twang’ will all be a test for the players; 7s truly is a case of survival of the fittest. All this with the knowledge that the only thing facing them between rounds is a recovery ice bath…in Spring…in Scotland…likely in the rain.
Let’s not focus on the negative however, 7s gives a player the chance to show off that dazzling side-step, cheeky behind the back pass or perfectly weighted chip and chase that is all too often stifled in the 15-a-side game. Cult heroes are born as defenders are sent for a taxi having bought an outrageous dummy. Sevens rugby really is a fantastic spectacle.
For those making the trip to Gala it will be a great day out, fantastic entertainment on the pitch and refreshments aplenty off it. Once the winner has been crowned there will be more entertainment and music in the Clubhouse late into the evening. A great way to spend a Sunday for the rugby aficionado or casual spectator alike.
Admission to Ground & Stand:
Secondary School Children £2
Primary School Children Free