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Civil Service Strollers 4 Burntisland Shipyard 0

Red mist comes down for Shipyard.

When the opposition manager states that three of their goals should not have stood you get the impression that something was amiss, and that was certainly the case on Wednesday night as the Shipyard were on the end of some controversial decisions at a sun drenched Christie Gillies Park. Manager Raymond Drury had the luxury of naming an unchanged starting eleven after Saturday’s win over Heriot Watt University.

After a bright opening to the match the Shippy shot themselves in the foot after four minutes when Graeme Haywood was short with a pass back and Strollers Jordan Finnie was able to latch onto the ball, round keeper Mark Rowbotham and roll the ball into the unguarded net to give the home team the lead. Craig Lowe had a shot charged down as the Shipyard looked for a quick response though it was the Strollers who went closest shortly after when Jack Downie scooped the ball over at the back post following a free-kick. Adam Doig drove just over after getting on the end of a knockdown from an Iain Millar throw in, while at the other end Rowbotham saved smartly from Finnie. Millar had a shot held by Stuart Burnside before the game erupted in controversy in the 24th minute. The visitors appeals that the ball was out of play was ignored by the officials and from the cross Ian Ballantyne prodded the ball into the net to double the lead though it appeared he pushed his opponent as the ball dropped at the back post. Kevin Masson had a shot on target but at the other end the Shippy had to rely on good defending from Gavin McCann and Pete Bell to keep their team in the game as half-time approached.

Rory McCann replaced the injured Haywood at the start of the second half and within two minutes the Shipyard found themselves three down with again the goal controversial. Finnie was standing yards offside when a long ball was played forward and when Ben Couper got a slight touch with his head Finnie was deemed to be onside and went on to despatch the ball beyond Rowbotham. Unfortunately the Shipyard players lost their discipline at this stage and Masson found the referee’s explanation of his decision unacceptable and was promptly red carded for comments he made. The Shipyard were down to nine men in the 54th minute when Ben Couper made comments to the assistant referee after an offside appeal was not given and in fairness he left the referee with no option. For the rest of the match the Shipyard were on the back foot though they defended doggedly and did not conceded again until the 85th minute when a cross took a wicked deflection off Gavin McCann though once again there was a suspicion of offside in the build-up.

The gaffer was tight lipped after the match and was brief when he said “Everyone seen what happened out there and I appreciated John’s (Watson) comments at the final whistle. Kev and Ben let themselves and their teammates down with their red cards which were borne out of pure frustration”.

Civil Service Strollers: S. Burnside; D. Middlemass (B. Milven); A. Brown; R. Laird; N. Stewart (J. Watson); J. Downie; D. Stewart; P. Greenhill (S. Clapperton); I. Ballantyne; J. Finnie; C. Milligan.

Burntisland Shipyard: M. Rowbotham; G. McCann; B. Couper; G. Haywood (R. McCann); I. Millar; P. Bell; C. Lowe; M. James (S. Devaney); E. Henderson; K. Masson; A. Doig (S. Stark).

Referee: M. Addy.