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Hawick Royal Albert 4 Burntisland Shipyard 0

Hawick horror show.

Manager Myles Allan lambasted his players after an absolute horror show at Hawick. Myles did not mince his words as he accused his players of showing a lack of attitude and commitment. All four goals were highly avoidable as Hawick won easily with the Shipyard offering  very little in attack either. Gavin Bridges, Adam Doig and Jordan Crombie dropped out of the team from last week and were replaced by Andy MacDonald, Joe Samson and Keith Buckley.

For the second week in a row a strong wind was going to dominate proceedings and Hawick were first to benefit from the elements at Albert Park. It was the Shipyard who created the first opportunity as Samson did well down the left hand side and it took a vital headed clearance to avert the danger as Buckley looked set to pounce. In the 3rd minute a free-kick played into the Shipyard box caused a bit of panic before the ball was finally cleared. Dale Robertson got on the end of a Kevin Masson free-kick but he could not direct his header on target. The home team took the lead in the 10th minute when a poor Mikey Couser goal kick was collected by the Hawick player and he played in Strathdee who made no mistake from inside the box. Robertson set up a chance for Buckley in the 18th minute but he dragged his shot wide of the goals. Four minutes later Buckley had another chance that this time he created himself. He showed good skill at the edge of the box to skip past  his marker but with only the keeper to beat his shot lacked the power to beat him. Hawick went close from a corner a minute later, however, a second goal was only delayed for a few minutes. This time a simple punt up the park caught the Shipyard defence sleeping and Young was able to latch onto the ball and coolly pass it beyond Couser and into the net. In a rare foray up the park a loose ball broke to Pete Bell and his powerful volley was deflected away for a corner. From a throw in near the corner flag the Shipyard defence let the ball bounce and were lucky when a close range effort came back off the bar and the follow up shot blocked by desperate defending. A shot from the edge of the box scrapped the outside of the Shipyard post and then Couser saved well from a 20 yard free-kick in added time.

Hopes were high in the Shipyard camp that with the wind at their back they would be able to dominate the second half and get themselves back into the match. That was not to be the case as the home team continued to dominate and only a Masson corner that hit the top of the Hawick bar gave the visitors any encouragement. The Shipyard defence continued to look vulnerable and a couple of mistakes just after the hour mark fortunately went unpunished. A break up the park in the 67th minute saw sub Doig’s lob parried by the keeper and cleared before the Shipyard fell three behind. Possession was lost  and as the ball was played through the middle, Strathdee beat Couser in the tackle and was able to roll the ball in to the empty net. The Shipyard day was summed up with ten minutes remaining when Strathdee fired his shot beyond Couser but Bell, on the line, could only help the ball into the net. The Shipyard had a couple of chances late on for a consolation goal but Craig Lowe headed over and Robertson after driving forward blasted over.

Once Myles had cooled down after spending a while with his players in the dressing room he emerged to say “We got exactly what we deserved today. When you can’t defend simple long balls then it doesn’t matter what you do anywhere else on the pitch. Hawick were hungrier than us and, as a player, the biggest criticism you can receive is when your attitude and commitment get called into question. After today’s performance, that’s one of the first things that will be looked at.
Regardless of what else is happening elsewhere on the pitch, every individual should be able to rely on a basic level of pride to drive their performance. Today we has too many guys who rolled over and just accepted whatever was going to happen rather than take the initiative to be an influence on the game. Looking ahead to the remaining games Myles said “We now have five games left and I will be using those games to see who really wants to be here next season. I’ve no doubt that they have ability but having ability is no good without the mentality to compete”

Team: M. Couser; A. MacDonald; P. Bell; B. Smart; A. Clark; K. Masson (A. Doig); J. Fyfe (G. Blyth); C. Lowe; K. Buckley; D. Robertson; C. Samson. Unused Subs: C. McKay; G. Bridges & J. Mushet.