Ayr’s league bout with Melrose came to an impromptu end this afternoon due to floodlight failure. After a period of flickering back and forth the lights inevitably gave way to darkness, concluding the fixture after 68 minutes, with Melrose 19-26 in front.  It would be a shame for the conclusion to smear what was a fantastic game of rugby hung in the balance from start to - premature - finish. The lead changed hands five times in total and was anyone’s game in the final third.

As darkness descended Ayr were perched ten-metres out, but Assistant Coach Robbie Fergusson won’t waste time thinking about what could have been: “I think we were building there at the end – It is frustrating but can’t be helped”. The game was all tied-up at the break, and Robbie was delighted with how the boys performed in the opening forty: “We played really well… I think we worked really hard for our scores. We looked after the ball really well which sometimes has been our flaw. “They are a good bunch of boys and they play hard for each other”. The visitors muscled their way on top in the opening phases of the game. A penalty to touch resulted in a well-worked driving maul and Hooker Ben McLean diving over. The lead stood for ten minutes before tight-head prop Ben Cree managed to wrangle his way over the line with a host of bodies tangled around him. Andy Morrison’s conversion took the lead. With twenty minutes played Melrose’s full-back managed to puncture the line, showing off his speed to slice through. He dotted down to regain the lead, before David Colvine added the extras from the kicking tee. Tit-for-tat, Cree powered over in similar fashion to his first try to chalk up the game. Morrison’s second conversion pulled the hosts back in front. Clark went on to bag his brace after half an hour. This time the full-back found himself with space out wide to dive over unscathed. A touchline conversion followed giving Melrose a 14-19 lead. On the stroke of half-time Camie Black broke clear to tie proceedings at the interval. After the break Melrose struck early, with Clark securing his hat-trick and the all-important game-winning try. Possession batted back and forth for the remainder of the game before referee Lee Fish blew early on player welfare grounds. FULL-TIME: Ayr RFC 19-26 Melrose RFC. For a brace of tries and all-round brilliance with ball in hand, Ben Cree was named Slaters Menswear Man of the Match. Ayr/ Millbrae also lost, falling 13-19 to GHA  2nd XV at Rozelle.