SHIELD: GHK ......... 46 Hawick ...... 18,

A year, it seems, is a long time in rugby. Just ask the players and supporters of Hawick, who were as dejected at Murrayfield as they had been jubilant just 12 months before.

The once mighty Greens, last year's cup winners, were swept aside by a GHK side packed with flair and commitment in the final of SRU Tennents Shield.

A 6-3 try count is impressive enough but it should not be forgotten that Hawick snatched two tries in under 10 minutes to make the scoreline even moderately respectable.

The 20 players who took the field for GHK - all the replacements except Kenny Hamilton went on for a piece of the action - cannot be praised highly enough and this correspondent is quite prepared to take back mid-season criticism of the commitment and organisation at Old Anniesland.

It remains to be seen, however, if this sort of performance can be carried into next season and there is already talk of this young squad breaking up.

Man of the match Fergus

Wallace, barely missing his injured young brother Murray in a splendid back row trio, showed admirable candour when he described the team as ''a Jekyll and Hyde outfit.'' If there were a little more of the

former and a lot less of the latter GHK would be a match for anyone.

Once again the back row played such a pivotal role in their success, with half-backs Gus Kerr and Cammy Little in sparkling form as they formed the links with a talented back division.

It is testament to GHK's expansive approach that five of the tries were shared by Gerry Hawkes on the wing and Ally Common in the centre.

Yet the platform was built up front and there were contributions from props Gordon McIlwham and Ewen Logan as well as from Neil Adams and Kenny Wilson at the lineout and in the loose play.

The game started evenly enough with just a Wallace try troubling the scorer but when referee Ray Megson, in his last outing before hanging up his whistle, waved away claims for a penalty try after Gerry Hawkes went sprawling in a race to the try line, GHK seemed to be stung into action.

Hawkes was over for a try within four minutes, to which Breckenridge added goal points before slotting his first penalty goal, answered in kind by Gregor Sharp.

Hawick came out of the interval apparently rejuvenated and a try for John Graham was early reward.

However, GHK had other ideas and in a blistering quarter-hour they added two tries from Common, a second for Hawkes, and three conversions and a penalty goal from Breckenridge. Hawkes set the ground alight for his hat trick with the try of the game, which Breckenridge converted.

Late tries went to Hawick's Tony Stanger and Jim Hay.

The irrepressible Hamilton is hereby awarded the mixed meta-phor award for the season. ''We came out of the traps early in the game with all cylinders firing...''

Scorers - GHK - Breckenridge 2p, 5c. Hawkes 3t. Common 2t. Wallace 1t. Hawick - Sharp 1p. Graham 1t. Stanger 1t. Hay 1t.

GHK - Breckenridge; Caldwell, Common, Bassi, Hawkes; Little, Kerr; McIlwham, Blackie, Logan, Adams, Wilson, Ness, Wallace, Unkles. Replacements - Barrett for Caldwell (65 mins), Malcolm for Unkles (67), McLay for Blackie (71), Manning for Hawkes (75), Irvine for Adams (79).

Hawick - Oliver; Grant, Stanger, Murray, Sharp; Wear, Reid; McDonnell, Hay, Landels, Elliot, Stevenson, Cottrill, Parkes, Graham.

Referee - R Megson (Edinburgh Wanderers).