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Merchistonian Shooting Match
The Magnificent Seven Do The Double (June 2015)
(Clays)
It was hard to believe that another year has passed as we gathered at Cluny Clay’s in Fife for the start of the annual match against the school last Saturday. The weather was pretty kind to us as well in that it didn’t rain. Think we have had summer already.

The format of the day is a match against the school clay team in the morning and then another match against the school rifle team (different boys) in the school range following lunch.
Unlike previous years we managed to get a bit of clay busting in with a trip to Cluny back in May followed by dinner and a few beers catching up with old friends and some new young ones too. We were pretty confident that we were fielding a decent team and that we would seek revenge for last year having lost by only one clay. Matt King had selected the layout of traps with some being straight forward and others near impossible.

The teams were split and the fun began with cries of oohs & aahs and some expletives which I can’t repeat! We finished in pretty quick time and the scores were compiled.
The old boys had triumphed by some 18 clays with a total of 192 ex 350 and the school boys with 174 ex 350. Top gun on the day was shared equally by George Russell & Richard Macmillan (old boys) with 36 ex 50 and Rory Campbell (school) with a fine 31 ex 50 on a difficult set up. I struggled to see some of the clays let alone hit them.

My thanks go to Matt King (master i/c clay shooting) for organising the morning and also to the school boys who were very gracious in defeat and provided enjoyable company whilst shooting for us all. There’s always next year!!

(.22 Rifle Match)
Having journeyed South from Fife to the school we lunched (never so much choice in my day!!) and then headed to the range for the second leg of the match. The school range had seen a wee overhaul since we last visited and was looking in good order. The school boys were already there getting in some practice which didn’t bode well. The format for this match was to shoot two 10 bull cards and two of the old boys were to shoot three times to make a total of 16 cards (there was only seven of us). This meant that the total score possible was 1,600. Some familiar school boy hot shots were starring again which was worrying as last year the boys won with a 100+ point’s margin.

We were pretty lucky this year as we had a couple of old boys who still shoot regularly but we also had Matt Brown who hadn’t shot for some eleven years!! I had scary memories of Calum “should have gone to Specsavers” Miller from last year. The old boys got off to a cracking start with both Patrick Costello & Lewis Allen leading the way with good scores in the 90’s. In fact, this set the precedent for the rest of the team who went on to shoot incredibly well with 15 out of 16 cards in the 90’s using borrowed kit and rifles – it’s very hard to describe just how difficult it is to shoot well with unfamiliar kit.
The match concluded after a few hours and the scores were in. The old boys had won with a score of 1,495 ex 1,600 and the school boys had 1,411 ex 1,600. However, the highlight for me was seeing Berty for the school who was 10 or 11 getting down and putting in a fantastic 79 ex 100 – well done!!

Top shot for the school boys was Cameron Rogers with 187 ex 200 and Patrick Costello with 193 ex 200 for the old boys (best two out of three).
Once again, a great afternoon of shooting was had and many thanks to the school boys and Alan Ewing (master i/c rifle shooting) for their hospitality. A great evening with curry & beers ended a fantastic day. My thanks also go to all those Merchistonian’s who were able to make the day and to those who made contact with me but who were unable to attend.

Our next competition will be in July where we hope to keep this winning streak going at the Public School’s Veterans Match at Bisley.

Scores
(Clays ex 50)

Richard Macmillan 36
Richard Dodds 24
Matt Brown 21
George Russell 36
Patrick Costello 23
Iain Brechin 26
Lewis Allen 26

(Rifles)
Richard Macmillan 189 ex 200
Matt Brown 182 ex 200
Richard Dodds 190 ex 200
Iain Brechin 188 ex 200
George Russell 178 ex 200
Lewis Allen 282 ex 300
Patrick Costello 286 ex 300


Richard Macmillan (81-87)
Shooting Captain/Secretary

 

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