Hurlford 0 Talbot 1 (H-T 0-0) | Auchinleck Talbot Forum
Hurlford needed the win to have any chance of overhauling Talbot but it was Talbot who were quickest out the blocks & the Bot nearly opened the scoring inside a minute. Milliken laid the ball back to G Wilson who curled it to the far post where Young just failed to connect.
The home side had an opportunity to test Leishman a minute later. Kean went down rather easily outside the Talbot box & the ref awarded Hurlford the free kick. M Brown took it but fired a wild shot off target.
Hurlford were expending a lot of energy for very little reward as Talbot’s defence mopped up every high ball thrown at them, with Leishman not being called upon at all.
The only thing missing for the Bot support was a goal to settle the nerves and Talbot ought to have moved in front in the 17th minute. Hyslop stroked the ball down the right to find Milliken wide of the area. He whipped a cross into the near post where G Wilson powered a header just wide of the left post.
Wilson came close again in the 24th minute when the Bot were awarded a free kick 22 yards out after a shove on Hyslop. G Wilson lifted it over the wall but it flew narrowly past Brown’s right hand post.
There hadn’t been many scares down the Talbot end but Hurlford did have a half chance in the 29th minute when McKenzie fired a low ball into the centre which broke out to Kean. He turned & fired for goal only to see his shot deflected for a corner.
The home side seemed bereft of ideas in the final third and Talbot played out the remainder of the half quite comfortably to go in goal less at the interval and only 45 minutes away from the title.
Talbot started the 2nd half as they had the 1st and won a free kick wide on the left after McKenzie tugged back Shankland. Pope delivered a dangerous ball to the back post but only R Robertson attacked it & he managed to head clear.
The decisive moment came in the 53rd minute. Young released G Wilson down the left & he cut inside & made a beeline for the penalty area. Chisholm fouled him right on the edge of the box and SHANKLAND took full advantage, bending a superb free kick over the wall & past a static Brown to put Talbot 1-0 ahead.
The home side now made a change with Donnelly coming on for Creaney.
Hurlford needed a goal back quickly & they were presented with a decent chance when Wilson was penalised for handball just outside the penalty area. R Robertson drilled it low past the wall but Leishman was down low by his left post to hold it.
Talbot were awarded a free kick within shooting range in the 66th minute after G Wilson was shoved in the back 30 yards from goal. Shankland again took the set piece but this time got too much on it & lifted it over the bar.
Hurlford now made their 2nd change with Borris replacing Chisholm, but it continued to be Talbot who looked the more likely to net the next goal. Even Hurlford’s manic bell ringer appeared to be losing hope as he fell silent.
A 2nd goal would have sealed it and Talbot did their best to produce it. In the 73rd minute Shankland whipped a superb cross in from the left which McKillen just nicked off the head of Hyslop who was poised to head home at the back post.
A few minutes later McKillen almost scored an o.g. Shankland fired a cross in from the left which he headed on target from 6 yards out but fortunately for him it went straight at his keeper.
Tucker made a change in the 77th minute with Steven Wilson replacing Shankland.
The sub was involved soon after coming on. Milliken’s diagonal ball found him breaking into the left side of the penalty area but the ball skipped up off him & broke through to the keeper.
Hurlford hadn’t looked like scoring & their chances went from slim to non-existent in the space of a few minutes. McKenzie received a deserved caution for persistent fouling after catching White and then two minutes later dived in recklessly on the same player, and the ref sent him to the clubhouse.
Talbot saw the clock out with little difficulty & as the game headed into injury time all Hurlford could produce was a late caution for R Robertson who had his name taken for a late tackle on G Wilson.
The final whistle saw the celebrations begin, as Talbot fans hailed another title triumph, made all the sweeter by clinching it on Hurlford’s park. After an up & down season, Talbot have ended on a high note, saving their best form for when it mattered.Hurlford – A Brown, M Brown, McKillen, G Mitchell, C Robertson, D Mitchell, McKenzie, Chisholm, Kean, R Robertson, Creaney
Subs – Donnelly, Borris, Byrne, Nisbet, MurchieTalbot – Leishman, Latta, Pope, McGoldrick, McCracken, White, Young, Hyslop, G Wilson, Shankland, Milliken
Subs – Love, S Wilson, Boyd, Lyle, Johnstone
|May 25, 2016||19:30||McBookies West Super Premier League||2015/16|