Falcons bring down Scotland

Gauteng Falcons 38 Scotland 35
A much-depleted Scottish side produced their worst performance on their South African tour last night as they suffered a humiliating defeat to Gauteng Falcons in the Bosman Stadium.

The full-back, Derrick Lee, posted a personal tally of 25 points from two tries, three penalties and three conversions and injected pace into a Scottish back line which at times looked flat-footed.

Scotland's forwards never gained any control on the game and it was the committed Falcons side, eager to claim a northern hemisphere scalp, that played with a winning passion.

Scotland trailed 16-14 at half-time, after a try by the Falcons flanker, De Wet Strydom, and a combination of skilful play from Falcons and a series of errors from Scotland allowed the home side to run in tries by the stand- off, Porta Hoffman, and the hooker, Jan Bosch.

The Falcons fell behind midway through the first-half when a Scottish breakaway ended with Lee touching down. Scotland, after a third-quarter slump which saw them trail 33-14, rallied with a try by flanker Cameron Mather and two late tries from the wing, Shaun Longstaff.

All three were converted by Lee but inbetween Falcons had scored vital points from a Van Riet try and a crucial fourth penalty from the goalkicker, Gert Peens.

"You can only play with what you've got," said Scotland's tour manager, Doug Morgan, who has clearly saved his best players for tomorrow night's tough game in Pretoria against Northern Transvaal.

Gauteng Falcons: Tries Bosch, De Wet Strydom, Hoffman, Van Riet. Conversions Peens 3. Penalties Peens 4. Scotland: Tries Lee 2, Longstaff, Mather. Conversions Lee 3. Penalties Lee 3.

Gauteng Falcons: J Blaauw; G Peens, M Masina, E Meyer, L van Riet; P Hoffman, N Campbell-McGeachy; I Hattingh (captain), J Bosch, J le Roux, W Lock, D van der Riet, J Senekal, N Pickford, De Wet Strydom.

SCOTLAND: D Lee (London Scottish); A Stanger (Hawick), C Murray (Hawick), J Mayer (Watsonians), S Longstaff (Dundee HSFP); S Nichol (Melrose), G Burns (Watsonians); D Hilton (Bath), S Brotherstone (Melrose), B Stewart (Edinburgh Academicals), S Murray (Bedford), A Lucking (Currie), C Mather (Watsonians), P Walton (Newcastle), N Broughton (Melrose).

Referee M Lawrence (South East Transvaal).

Scotland's development squad, the Silver Thistles, ran in seven tries as they beat Waikato's Under-21 team 41-18 in New Zealand yesterday. A local player, Mike Davies, standing in for the full-back Campbell Aitken, claimed four of the tries, with Iain Sinclair, Gareth Flockhart and Alan Bulloch also scoring. Mark McKenzie converted two of the tries and kicked one successful penalty.