Photographs by Paul Flynn.
MATCH REPORT MURRAY STEEL
The Bot couldn’t have asked for a better start, taking the early initiative & opening the scoring after only two minutes. After a good passing move Glasgow was unlucky not to score when his shot crashed off Semple’s right post with the keeper beaten but the ball rebounded out to GRAHAM WILSON who passed it into the net.
Semple prevented Talbot from doubling their lead a few minutes later. Harvey flighted a ball down the right that found Glasgow breaking down the right edge of the penalty area. He drilled a low shot on target that Semple turned around his near post.
A minute later Talbot threatened again. White fed the ball to Pope whose shot was intercepted by G Wilson. He took a touch & ran through on Semple but the ball broke away from him & the keeper was able to gather.
Talbot continued to dominate & had a good chance to double their lead in the 9th minute. Cumnock failed to clear their lines following a corner & when the ball was popped back into the box it found G Wilson in space on the left. He had a clear sight of goal but Semple successfully parried his shot; it came back out to Wilson but he hurried his 2nd effort & floated a shot across the face of goal.
Cumnock were gradually working their way back into the game but it was Talbot who produced the next near thing; almost doubling their lead in the 16th minute from a corner. Glasgow whipped the corner in from the left & G Wilson met it to glance a header on goal that was heading inside the left post until cleared off the line by Muir.
For all Talbot’s chances a one goal lead is always precarious & so it proved as Cumnock levelled in the 19th minute with their 1st real look at the Talbot goal. Lyle conceded a needless free kick out on the left & Fitzharris curled an inch perfect in swinger onto the head of BURNS who nodded home to make it 1-1 & then picked up a caution for taunting the Bot support.
The goal changed the game, deflating Talbot as it lifted Cumnock, and the visitors had a chance to take the lead in the 21st minute. Semple hoisted a long ball down the centre which broke into the path of Anson 18 yards out. He hit it 1st time, forcing a decent stop out of Leishman who had to gather at the 2nd attempt.
Talbot had lost their early fluidity & the game became something of a stalemate. Talbot had a couple of chances from set pieces within shooting distance but neither Graham Wilson or Pope could test the keeper, albeit Wilson wasn’t helped with the defensive wall standing 6 yards away.
Lundie & then Fitzharris picked up cautions for the visitors as the half meandered to a close; the only close call coming in the final minute of the half when Fitzharris angled a free kick onto the head of McKenzie who put it into the side-net from a tight angle.
The 2nd half opened as scrappily as the 1st departed & Talbot were rocked in the 51st minute when the referee awarded a soft penalty to Cumnock when Anson fell to the turf as he was making his way out of the box. BURNS stepped up to take the penalty & sent Leishman the wrong way to roll it home.
Glasgow picked up a caution in the 52nd minute when he clashed with Montgomerie.
Talbot needed to find a way back into the game & did so in the 55th minute. Leishman punted it down the right where Hyslop climbed to head it into the centre. GRAHAM WILSON gathered 25 yards out & worked it out his feet before lifting an unstoppable shot into the postage stamp corner.
Before play could re-start Talbot were forced into a change with the injured McCracken making way for McPherson at the heart of the Bot defence.
The visitors nearly regained the lead in the 59th minute. The Bot defence was caught flat footed by a ball over the top sending Hastings free on the left. He cut the ball back to the edge where Montgomerie met it & arrowed a shot on target that Leishman did well to save to his left.
Talbot had a chance to take the lead in the 61st minute when Hyslop helped the ball on into the path of G Wilson. He had the chance to take it 1st time but chose to bore in on goal & Lundie recovered well to challenge & put it behind.
Semple made a 2nd crucial stop from Glasgow in the 65th minute & it was the mirror image of his earlier save as he blocked with his feet inside to his right to prevent Glasgow’s low drive angling inside the post.
Cumnock then had a lucky escape from the ensuing corner when the ball was scrambled clear from the goal mouth.
Cumnock now made a change with McLaughlan replacing Hastings.
Talbot made difficulties for themselves soon after when McPherson conceded a needless corner kick with a slack back pass. When the corner came over it pinged around the area before Anson drilled a shot at goal that was deflected wide.
The referee, who had been a tad card happy all day, gave Graham Wilson an inexplicable caution in the 71st minute for a foul only he saw.
Tucker made a bold change in the 72nd minute, replacing Armstrong with McIlroy, with Glasgow switching out to the right and it paid off within two minutes as Talbot took the lead.
Harvey chipped the ball into the area where McIlroy’s instant control & quick feet bamboozled Lundie before drawing Semple in & squaring it. The Nock keeper floored McIlroy but his ball inside found GRAHAM WILSON who slotted the ball into the empty net to put Talbot back in front.
Cumnock weren’t finished though & gave Talbot a scare in the 78th minute when Anson guided a header into the path of McKenzie who saw his shot blocked.
Tucker made a further change in the 82nd minute with Thomson coming on for Glasgow.
The game ebbed & flowed in the closing stages though the ref handed a late advantage to Cumnock with a bizarre sending off with two minutes remaining. G Wilson tried to shield a ball out by the left touchline where he was clumsily floored by a barge from Lundie. A straight forward free kick to Talbot to everyone in the ground but for the optically challenged official who awarded Cumnock the free kick & sent Wilson off for what must rate as the lamest double booking I’ve seen.
Justice was served as Talbot saw out the closing minutes to register the win, a result made all the more precious by Beith’s slip up which tightens things up at the top of the table.
Next up for Talbot is the Scottish cup where Talbot host North Region opposition in the shape of Forres Juniors.
Talbot – Leishman, Lyle, Pope, Harvey, McCracken, White, Armstrong, S Wilson, G Wilson, Glasgow, Hyslop
Subs – McIlroy, Pooler, Shankland, Thomson, McPherson
Cumnock – Semple, Woods, Muir, Lundie, McKenna, Montgomerie, Fitzharris, Burns, Anson, McKenzie, Hastings
Subs – McLaughlan, Shirkie, Johnston (gk)
|October 21, 2017||14:00||McBookies West Super Premier League||2017/18|
|10||Jamie Glasgow 14||Midfielder||0||0||0||0|
|7||Gareth Armstrong 12||Defender||0||0||0||0|
|15||Neill McPherson 5||Defender||0||0||0||0|
|5||Craig McCracken 15||Defender||0||0||0||0|