Talbot won this Ayrshire weekly press cup tie comfortably, easing past Whitletts without ever really finding top gear.
The 1st meaningful attack of the afternoon came after 5 minutes. Shankland fed the ball out to Graham Wilson on the left wing & he swept over a superb early cross that Glasgow & then Hyslop just failed to connect with.
The opening goal came after 20 minutes. Stephen Wilson burst forward before releasing the ball left to find Graham Wilson. He passed it into the path of JAMIE GLASGOW who slotted a low left-foot shot past the keeper to make it 1-0.
Three minutes later Talbot threatened the Whitletts goal again. A long diagonal ball found Armstrong on the right of the area & he floated a header back across goal which Mullen headed over his own bar. Shankland pulled the resultant corner back into the path of Stephen Wilson whose net bound drive was blocked away off a Whitletts defender.
Forsyth had his name taken in the 27th minute for a series of fouls on Graham Wilson.
In a rare attack Whitletts managed to win a corner in the 32nd minute. It was delivered to the back post where Buchanan headed it well over.
Action then switched to the other end where Glasgow cut in off the left wing before firing a shot inches wide of Fraser’s right post.
Talbot’s next attack saw Leishman bowl the ball out to Armstrong on the right. He slid a perfectly weighted pass through to release Glasgow whose cross was cut out by Fraser at his near post.
Anderson became the 2nd Vics player cautioned when he was shown a yellow in the 36th minute for a late challenge on Graham Wilson.
Two minutes later Talbot had a half chance when Armstrong’s cross into the area fell to Shankland. He brought it down but was closed down before he could get a shot away. The ball broke to Stephen Wilson whose fierce drive was blocked by Mullen.
Boyd became the 3rd Vics player to be booked when he had his name taken in the 38th minute.
Whitletts over-physical approach saw Fisher join the growing crime count when he was cautioned in the 40th minute for a very late challenge on Faulds. The resultant free kick was played into the feet of Glasgow who tried to place it low inside the right post. Fraser dived to his right to keep it out & although Graham Wilson pounced on the rebound to knock it home, the flag rightly went up for offside.
Talbot kept pressing but couldn’t add to their lead & went in 1-0 ahead at the interval.
Both sides made a change during the break with McIlroy coming on for Graham Wilson & Ogston replacing Forsyth for the visitors.
Just as in the 1st half Talbot were doing all the pressing & came close to doubling their advantage in the 52nd minute. The Bot were awarded a free kick 22 yards out after Stephen Wilson was fouled & Shankland struck it over the wall only to be denied by Fraser who flew to his right to touch it onto the bar. The rebound came out to Glasgow but he failed to take advantage; heading over the bar from close range.
Talbot kept the pressure on & a minute later Hyslop came close when he let fly from 20 yards; his low drive being deflected just wide of the right post.
Shankland took the corner quickly; finding Stephen Wilson in space but he curled his shot way over the bar from 15 yards out.
Whitletts now made a further change with Louis Kerr coming on in place of Fisher.
Talbot had the visitors defence at full stretch in the 57th minute. Armstrong slid the ball through to Faulds on the right touchline & he whipped a good early cross over that Mullen did well to clear.
The 2nd goal ought to have arrived in the 61st minute. Glasgow gathered out on the left & played a great ball across the face of goal to find McIlroy free at the back post but he got his angles all wrong & side-footed it back across goal & well wide of target.
The game should have been out of sight but with only a goal in it Whitletts were far from out of it & the visitors gave Talbot a wee fright in the 63rd minute. They were awarded a free kick 30 yards out which Buchanan took & he hit a screamer that flew just over the bar.
Talbot were soon back on the attack & threatened the Vics goal again in the 67th minute. Faulds diagonal pass found Glasgow inside the area & he was able to head it past the advancing Fraser. He gathered the ball near the bye line & tried to squeeze it across the face of goal but it was blocked behind for the corner.
Talbot took the corner short & Shankland tried his luck from the left of the area; his low volley deflecting off a defender & going straight to Fraser at his near post.
Tucker made a double substitution in the 69th minute with Hyslop & Shankland making way for White & McPherson.
Within a minute, Talbot grabbed their 2nd to effectively kill the tie off. SEAN MCILROY surged in off the left touchline, squeezing between two Whitletts defenders before drilling a low shot inside Fraser’s right post.
Leishman hadn’t been called upon to do much but he was tested in the 76th minute. George was allowed to drift in unopposed from the left & Leishman had to get down low at his right post to hold his effort.
Talbot had a chance to grab another in the 79th minute. White carried it forward before releasing it inside to Stephen Wilson. He spread play out to the right to find Glasgow whose low drive was deflected into the side-netting.
Two minutes later Faulds headed over the bar when he met Wilson’s cross from the left.
The visitors had a late chance to snatch a consolation effort in the 88th minute. Talbot lost possession inside the Vics half & the ball was knocked down the right wing where it found Forsyth breaking free. He sped on into the area but took a wild swipe at it & sent his shot flying well off target.
Not one of Talbot’s better performances but a comfortable enough win & a clean sheet. Next up for Talbot is the 1st leg of the Scottish cup semi-final where they face Lochee United at Beechwood.
Auchinleck Talbot – Leishman, Armstrong, Lyle, Harvey, McCracken, Stephen Wilson, Faulds, Hyslop, Graham Wilson, Glasgow, Shankland
Subs – McIlroy, White, Pope, McPherson, Hewitt (gk)
Whitletts Victoria – Fraser, Anderson, Brown, Mullen, Isaac Kerr, Buchanan, Fisher, Sloan, Forsyth, Boyd, George
Subs – Milligan, Louis Kerr, Barbour, Ogston, Dempsey
REPORT BY MURRAY STEELE
Talbot traveled to Kilwinning for this Weekly Press Cup semi final with a depleted squad to face a “Buffs” side who were facing the same dilemma and couldn’t even muster a substitute. Talbot’s starting line up consisted of a back four made up of three central defenders and a midfielder with young Jamie Whyte at right back and Ross Harvey in the left back berth. The centre of defensive consisted of Steven White and Neil McPherson.
Talbot were first to show and racked up a number of corners but the home side defended well, but there was a decent shout for handball in the box which the referee and linesman waved away. Kilwinning took the lead nearing the end of the first half when the makeshift Talbot defence were left flat footed and Ben Lewis rattled a decent shot past Leishman.
Talbot made a substitute at half time when Hyslop replaced the injured Harvey which forced McCracken to play at left back. Talbot were back in the game early doors when Graham Wilson fashioned himself a good opening and as Strain came off his line he lobbed a decent shot over the keeper and into the net off the under side of the crossbar.
The game was put to rest later on when McCracken was found unmarked at the faraway post and he headed past the keeper to give Talbot the tie.
Auchinleck Talbot 7 Ardrossan Winton Rovers 1 (H-T 6-0)
Goals have been in short supply of late but it only took Talbot half a minute to take the lead in this tie. Pope swung a cross over to find DYLAN STEVENSON in space 6 yards out & he side-footed home at the back post to make it 1-0.
Talbot doubled their lead after 12 minutes. McPherson pinged a good ball down the right to find Pooler & he squared it across the penalty area where KLARK THOMSON ran onto it & slotted home.
Davidson had his name taken in the 19th minute for a swipe at Stevenson as he broke down the right. Young whipped the free kick into the 6-yard area where it broke for JAMES WHITE in front of goal & he slammed it home to score on his debut.
Davidson was heading for an early bath in the 22nd minute when he picked up a 2nd yellow card. He clipped the heels of Thomson as he was bearing down on goal; leaving the ref little choice but to send him off & award the penalty, which KEIR MILLIKEN duly dispatched into the back of the net.
With the game effectively over as a contest Talbot used their extra man to good effect; knocking the ball about at their ease as they dominated possession.
It was 5-0 to Talbot in the 36th minute. Young picked up 30 yards from goal & clipped an accurate pass straight to the feet of STEVENSON who strolled onto it & passed the ball into the net.
Four minutes before half-time & Talbot make it 6 with STEVENSON grabbing his hat-trick. McCracken played him in behind the defence & he buried his shot low inside the right post.
Ardrossan made a change at the start of the 2nd half with Colligan on in place of McGregor.
Talbot continued as they’d left off; camped in the Winton half looking to add to their tally. Ross fired Stevenson’s dangerous cross over his own crossbar and minutes later Pope tested Caddis with a swerving drive from 20 yards.
Tucker made a double substitution in the 57th minute with Young & Milliken departing the scene to be replaced by Steven White & Wilson.
The 7th goal arrived in the 63rd minute. Stevenson won a corner on the right & when it came over Wilson guided a header off the foot of the left post & POOLER was on hand to tap home the rebound.
Ardrossan had offered little to no threat but they did succeed in snatching a consolation effort in the 66th minute when they were awarded a penalty for handball. COLLIGAN took it & thumped the spot kick home via the underside of the bar.
With 20 mins remaining Shankland made his return to action when he came on in place of Pooler.
Talbot could, and probably should, have added to their goal haul in the closing 20 minutes. Firstly, Wilson nicked the ball off a defender inside the area & fired a cross onto the head of Stevenson which he directed over the bar.
Wilson had a good chance to get on the score sheet in the 72nd minute when Pope’s cross found him in front of goal but he placed his header over the crossbar.
A minute later he had an even better chance when Shankland curled the perfect cross over from the left, however he steered his free header well wide of the right post.
Wilson did have the ball in the net in the 76th minute but it was correctly chalked off for offside. Caddis spilled Shankland’s shot from 20 yards & Wilson tucked in the rebound but the linesman’s flag went up straight away.
Pope came close to adding to Talbot’s lead in the 85th minute when he arrowed a left foot shot just wide of the left hand post.
The final chance of the evening came two minutes from time. Shankland lifted a cross to the far post where Wilson turned smartly before firing over the bar.
This was a very comfortable night for Talbot which hopefully will have bolstered the squad’s confidence going into Troon’s visit to Beechwood this Saturday.
Auchinleck Talbot – Leishman, Lyle, Pope, McPherson, J White, Thomson, Young, McCracken, Pooler, Milliken, Stevenson
Subs – S Wilson, Shankland, S White, McLuckie, Hewitt
Ardrossan Winton Rovers – D Caddis, Ross, Easdon, Lennox, McGregor, Davidson, Tan, Kearns, R Caddis, Cairnie, McMahon
Subs – Colligan, Davidson, McNeil, Jamieson, Neil
Talbot paid the penalty for failing to build on an early lead as they lost out in a spot kick shoot off to Beith following a 1-1 draw.
The game had an end of season feel about it & there were few clear cut chances created by either side.
The 1st to show was the home side, after 3 minutes, when Reid narrowly volleyed past the post from 18 yards out.
However it was Talbot who opened the scoring with their 1st real attack after 12 minutes. Hyslop’s pass released Young on the left & he in turn fed it on to G Wilson. He crossed to the far post where MILLIKEN volleyed it on target & Grindlay couldn’t prevent it going in at his left post.
A good passing move ended with Pope free on the left of the penalty area & Sheridan did well to knock his low centre behind for the corner. Shankland lifted the corner to the far post where Hyslop looped a header over the bar.
Talbot won a free kick 30 yards from goal in the 20th minute when Shankland was impeded by Sheridan. Shankland took it himself but his shot hit the defensive wall.
Grindlay kept the home side in it on the half hour mark. S Wilson ran onto a weak clearance and thumped a shot on target that the keeper did well to tip over his bar at full stretch.
McLean missed a good chance to level the match in the 32nd minute. He met Burke’s corner at the near post but steered his free header wide of Leishman’s left post.
The assistant ref got it badly wrong a few minutes later when he kept his flag down as McLean raced free down the left. He looked clearly offside, but in the end no harm was done as he lost his footing inside the area & the ball trundled behind for the goal kick.
The final chance of the half came Beith’s way in the 45th min. Watt lifted a cross over beyond the far post where Burke rose to head it on target but Leishman was well positioned to make the stop.
The home side made a change during the interval with Clark coming on for McArthur.
Shooting down the slope Beith started the 2nd half strongly & forced a save out of Leishman within a minute. Watt shifted the ball right to find Frize racing into the area & his low shot across goal was turned away by Leishman.
Tucker made a change in the 51st minute with Boyd coming on for G Wilson.
Talbot were unlucky on the hour mark when a slick passing move ended with Lyle inches from connecting with Shankland’s through ball. The pass took out the central defence but Grindlay read the danger & was quickly off his line to smother at the feet of Lyle.
Two minutes later Shankland carved out another opportunity. This time he whipped a cross over from the left that just required a touch to put it in but Boyd failed to make contact at the back post.
Within a minute Talbot threatened again. This time, Milliken curled a good cross over from the right which Hyslop headed for goal. Grindlay was beaten but his looping header just cleared the bar.
Beith now made their 2nd change with Collins on for Reid.
Talbot were left to rue those missed chances in the 66th minute when Beith levelled. McGowan flighted a high cross in from the right which Leishman misjudged. The ball came to BURKE beyond the back post & he passed it into the empty net.
Tucker now made Talbot’s 2nd change with Love coming on for Shankland & moments later S Wilson picked up the 1st caution of the afternoon when he prevented Beith from taking a quick free kick.
With quarter of an hour remaining Talbot won a free kick 30 yards out after Sheridan fouled Hyslop. The large travelling support weren’t slow in letting the ref know this was Sheridan’s umpteenth offence but the ref chose to keep his cards in his pocket.
Hyslop fired the free kick over the wall but it also flew just over Grindlay’s bar.
Tucker made his final change in the 82nd minute with Gillies replacing Milliken.
Beith had a chance in the 85th min. Following a bout of heady tennis around the Bot penalty area the ball came through the centre to McLean & he nearly got on the end of it but just failed to connect & the ball ran through to Leishman.
In the final minute of the 90 Talbot were denied a late winner by a great save from Grindlay. Young had his heels clipped 25 yards out resulting in a free kick on the right. Young rolled the ball square to Pope & he drilled a shot heading inside the left post until Grindlay tipped it wide. Boyd retrieved it but his attempted cross was blocked for a corner that the defence cleared & so it came to penalties.
MacDonald went first for Beith but Leishman saved his effort; Hyslop was 1st up for Talbot & he sent his pen inside the left post; Collins tucked his pen into the corner for Beith and Young sent Grindlay the wrong way to keep Talbot 2-1 ahead; Burke levelled the score, although Leishman was unlucky, guessing the right way & getting a hand to it but unable to keep it out; S Wilson was next up for Talbot & he hit a penalty he’ll want to forget, steering it well wide of the right post; McLean put Beith ahead before Gillies levelled for Talbot; Reid made it 4-3 to the home side & Pope sent Grindlay the wrong way to level at 4-4. Docherty put Beith 5-4 ahead meaning that McGoldrick had to score, but unfortunately Grindlay went the right way & dived to his right to make the save.
Next up for Talbot is Monday night’s derby clash with Cumnock at Rosebank in the semi-final of the Evening Times Cup.
Beith – Grindlay, McArthur, Docherty, MacDonald, Sheridan, McGowan, Watt, Frize, McLean, Reid, Burke
Subs – Collins, Clark, McGregor
Talbot – Leishman, Lyle, Pope, McGoldrick, White, S Wilson, Young, Hyslop, G Wilson, Shankland, Milliken
Subs – Boyd, Love, Gillies, Johnstone
Talbot rotated their squad to good effect as they hammered Dalry 8-0 in the 2nd rd of the Ayrshire Weekly Press cup.
Talbot started as they meant to go on, with a goal within 2 mins. Shankland popped the ball in behind for LOVE to run onto & he placed it beyond Hewitt.
Dalry had to make an early change when Stewart limped off to be replaced by McLaughlin.
It was one way traffic & Love nearly added to the lead in the 9th min but he steered Shankland’s cross wide of target.
Hyslop wasted a good chance to extend the lead when sent through on goal by Steven Wilson. He scuffed his shot & it went tamely at Hewitt.
The chances came one after another, with Love testing the keeper twice and Gillies also working the keeper.
The only surprise was that Dalry held out until the 32nd min before conceding again. Pope hit a superb diagonal pass to S Wilson & he threaded it through for GILLIES to bury it beyond Hewitt.
Dalry were under the cosh & the pressure told just before half time. Shankland’s corner was flicked goal ward by Hyslop & although Hewitt saved his header, GILLIES pounced to nod home the rebound.
The 2nd half was only 2 mins old when Talbot grabbed their 4th. HYSLOP met a corner from the left to glance a header into the roof of the net.
It was 5 after 53 mins. A slick move saw Gillies touch it into Love whose short pass sent HYSLOP through on the keeper. Hewitt did well to block his shot but Hyslop kept his cool to dispatch the rebound.
Tucker made a change on the hour mark with Young replacing Hyslop and the sub made an early impact, whipping a ball in from the right touchline for GILLIES to volley home for his hat-trick.
Talbot’s 7th of the night came after 68 mins. Shankland swung in a dangerous cross & LOVE converted with a diving header.
With 20 mins remaining Talbot made a double switch with Milliken & G Wilson on for Boyd & Gillies.
Graham Wilson passed up a decent chance in the 80th min. Love played in Milliken & he squared it to Wilson who took too long to get his shot away & saw it blocked by Brown.
The scoring was completed in the 86th min. S Wilson found Milliken free on the right of the area & he drilled a shot on target. Hewitt saved at his near post but it came straight back to Milliken who laid it across goal for SHANKLAND to finish from close range.
Talbot – Johnstone, Findlay, Pope, Lyle, White, Boyd, S Wilson, Hyslop, Gillies, Shankland, Love
Subs – Young, Milliken, G Wilson, Leishman
Dalry – Hewitt, Gallagher, Marshall, Brown, McFadzean, Guthrie, Gray, Irvine, Mills, Stewart, Archdeacon
Subs – McLaughlin, McGivern, McMunn, McVeigh, Hood