HILLFOOTS got the new year off to a strong start as they defeated Aberdeen Wanderers 36-17.

Tillicoultry provided a lovely day for a game of rugby, with the wet and miserable weather disappearing for a short while.

The hosts started very strongly, quickly adding two points after a thunderous run from centre Jordan Usher before being finished off by Gregor Manson.

Not long after, Charlie Robins broke away and powered over from around 20 yards, assisting Manson who scored another two points.

Aberdeen, who are struggling at bottom of the league, were unable to find a response and things only got worse for them when a fumbled pass fell right into the hands of full back Grant Carmichael. Once again, Manson finished off to secure the points.

By half time, it looked like Hillfoots were going to soar clear to victory as they led Wanderers 21-0.

Hillfoots came out as they did before and by the time the final whistle had called, they had added three more tries to the scoresheet.

Straight into the second half, ‘Foots veteran forward David Cree powered through to secure more points.

Wanderers came out the break a bit livelier and managed to steal a few points with a well worked try.

Usher broke through and almost made it to the visitors’ line but was halted, allowing Carmichael to go unnoticed for his second touchdown of the day.

A trademark jinky run from right winger Ryan Butterworth was next and he caught three tacklers off guard to dot down in the corner.

With 20 minutes left on the clock, Wanderers trailed Hillfoots by more than 30 points.

Aberdeen refused to lie down, however, and struck up a gallant last effort and got two more tries before the end of the match but was not enough to catch up with the hosts.

As the final whistle sounded, Gregor Lumsden was awarded man of the match as he impressed as both hooker and flanker in a dominant pack performance.

Hillfoots performed strongly in their first performance after the Christmas break which sees them sitting at fifth in the league on 15 points. Aberdeen Wanderers sit rock bottom on -2 points.

Hillfoots RFC will be in league action again in almost two weeks as they travel to Ellon on Saturday, January 21.

Ellon are currently second in the league and will provide a tough test for the Tilly men.