HELENSBURGH Rugby Club’s under-16s put themselves in a strong position in the pool stage of the West of Scotland Cup with a 21-19 home win over Stewartry on Sunday.

After an evenly matched opening 10 minutes, Stewartry opened the scoring with a smart interception on the Helensburgh 22 metre line.

Helensburgh responded immediately with a series of turn-overs in the ruck and some powerful running from a dominant pack.

Alex Tacchi had an outstanding game, disrupting Stewartry possession and powering over the visitors’ line to score twice.

Will Harrison also played a captain’s performance with some ferocious tackling and penetrating breaks; his quick thinking following a penalty caught the opposition with their backs turned as he darted across their try line.

READ MORE: Anne is pride of Helensburgh RFC after making her Scotland debut in win over Japan

Finlay Martin at full-back was Helensburgh’s stand-out defensive player: his tackling against some elusive Stewartry running was rock-solid. In tricky weather conditions, he was equally assured under the high ball frequently turning defence into attack.

A late converted try in the corner by Stewartry closed the gap to two points, but the score was too little too late to stop a deserved victory for the Helensburgh lads.

* There’s more from Helensburgh’s next generation this weekend when the club’s under-15s play host to Ayr in a cup tie.

The match takes place at Ardencaple on Sunday, February 13 with a 2pm kick-off.

(Report and photo contributed by Peter Kemp)

READ MORE: Catch up with the latest headlines from across Helensburgh and Lomond by clicking here