Making the grade

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A PAIR of GHA’s up-and-comers have been named in the Scotland under 18 squad.

Rory Hughes and Adam Barnett could be playing international rugby on their home ground as two of the international matches will be at Braidholm. Scotland’s under-18 international programme starts with a game against Japan at Braidholm on Sunday March 20.

Following a match against England in Leeds, the youngsters return to Braidholm on April 3 for match against Ireland.

Winger Rory Hughes – a MET colleges student – and second row Adam Barnett – a Mearns Castle pupil – previously wore the national team jersey when they represented the under-17’s in the Wellington College international festival last year.

It is a bit of good news during a season that has stalled due to inclimate weather.

GHA were scheduled to face Scottish champions Ayr on Saturday in cup action, but more snow meant another week in the gym for the Braidholm club.

Captain Niall Cassie was dissapointed to miss the chance to test himself against Scotland’s best.

He told ExtraSport: “Our main focus is on the league but it would have been a good test to play against a team of Ayr’s pedigree.

“There are a lot of younger boys in the team who will have never experienced that before”.

The squad have been training hard at Hutcheson’s Grammar School and using the facilities at a city centre gym to try and stay on top of their fitness prior to continuing their fight to keep their premier two status.

Coach Paul Tyler added: “The break came at a good time for us and has allowed players to recharge and recover from various niggling injuries. “Hopefully we’ll be back at full strength when the league season gets underway again ”.

GHA, who have not played since November 21 – a fate also experienced by the other southside rugby clubs – are scheduled to face Jed-Forrest this weekend.

Whitecraigs have managed to learn from the best during the winter break, training with associate club Ayr at Millbrae, as well as fitness sessions at St Ninian’s High school.

The West lodge side are scheduled to host Perthshire on Saturday while Cartha Queen’s Park could face a visit to Musselburgh.