Haddington 0-38 Murrayfield Wanderers

HADDINGTON head coach Rhodri Thomas admitted he was “gutted” as the Reds slumped to defeat at the hands of promoted Murrayfield Wanderers as their National League Division 3 season got under way on Saturday.

The Reds went into the match hoping to build on their win over West of Scotland in the BT National League Cup seven days earlier, but coach Thomas reflected on a well below-par performance as the visitors secured a comfortable win.

And Thomas, now in his third season in charge at Neilson Park, told Courier Sport: “We were confident going into the match and were looking to start the season well.

“Unfortunately this was not to be the case and we were second best against an organised and well-drilled Murrayfield Wanderers team.

“Areas of our game were good in spells although not for any sustained period and we weren’t able to impose ourselves on the match.”

Haddington conceded two converted tries in the first half and turned round 17 points adrift and a man light, with Sam Morley in the sin-bin on his first start for the club.

And things only got worse for the hosts after the break, with three more converted tries sealing a big win for the Capital outfit.

Thomas said his squad would need to “prepare well” this week, as they face a trip to Highland tomorrow (Saturday), a game the coach described as “a challenging task”, with the Inverness club out to avenge a loss to the Reds on home soil last season.

Haddington: S Morley, M Robertson, J Ferguson, L Clutton, K Hamilton; A Ferguson, J Paterson; G Cockburn, A Cunningham, P Smith, B Laing, H Hamilton, C Hamilton, C Munro, J Riddell.