PHOTOGRAPHS BY PAUL FLYNN.
MURRAYS MATCH REPORT
There was a time when Tayport were Talbot’s bogey team and for a while yesterday it looked like the past repeating itself but although Talbot made heavy work of it they managed to book their place in the last 8 of the Scottish.
The Bot couldn’t have asked for a better start; taking the lead within half a minute. Armstrong pinged a ball into the box & the visiting defence put on a slapstick routine, getting in one another’s road & allowing the ball to run through to BRYAN BOYLAN who passed it into the empty net from 6 yards.
The early goal didn’t open the floodgates with Talbot struggling to find their feet in the final third.
It took until the 19th minute before either goal was threatened again. McCracken played it into the feet of Samson & he cut in off the left before firing a low shot wide of the right hand post.
Talbot had a good chance to double their advantage in the 24th minute. Boylan gathered down the left & fed it back to Healy. He swept a low ball across the area which Hyslop met 12 yards out but he steered his shot over the bar.
Stephen Wilson had his name taken in the 29th minute when he halted a Tayport counter-attack down the right wing.
Tayport hadn’t offered much of a threat but they did come close in the 31st minute. Wilson won a corner down the left & when Shaw whipped the corner over Robertson met it. The ball hit him rather than the other way round but it was heading goal ward until McCracken cleared it from the goal mouth.
The visitors grew in confidence & caused a fright in the 38th minute when a ball was pinged down the left. It flew over McPherson and found Robertson breaking in behind; however he was beaten to it by Leishman who’d read the danger & raced out his box to clear.
Two minutes later Talbot put together a neat move. Healy played it into Hyslop inside the area & he laid it off first time for Graham Wilson but there was a yard too much on it & the keeper was able to gather. Talbot finished the half on the front foot but had nothing to show for it and went in at the interval with a one goal lead.
Talbot started the 2nd half as though they meant business and should have had the game out of sight within 5 mins of the re-start. In the 46th minute Samson launched a long shy in from the right that Hyslop head flicked on. It came to Graham Wilson whose drive was blocked. It rebounded to Hyslop but his effort in turn was blocked by a defender before Graham Wilson had another go; only to see a defender in the road for the 3rd time..
Two minutes later Healy found Samson out on the right & he fed it on to the overlapping Armstrong. He floated a cross onto the head of Healy who headed it down and back across goal only for it to hit the heel of a defender before being cleared.
In the 50th minute Talbot ought to have doubled their lead. Graham Wilson met a ball up the left & headed it on into the path of Boylan who raced in behind the defence but blazed over the bar from 12 yards.
Action then switched to the other end where Tayport won a free kick just outside the area. Shaw curled it to the back post where it was headed behind for a corner. When the corner came in it was only cleared as far as Wilson who cut in off the right before drilling a shot for goal that took a deflection off Robertson en route to Leishman.
Talbot’s next attack saw Healy spread play with a great pass to release Samson down the right. He sped down the touchline before firing a dangerous ball across the face that found no takers.
The first change of the afternoon came after 66 mins with Shankland coming on for Boylan.
The officials called it wrong in the 72nd minute when they awarded Tayport a corner down the right. Robertson clearly screwed his shot well wide of target but the ref saw a nonexistent deflection. When the corner came over it was only partially cleared; falling into the path of J Mackie whose shot from 18 yards was deflected over. The Bot defence were caught sleeping at the corner as Shaw played it into the near post where Robertson’s head glanced it on for ROLLO to tuck home from close range to level the score.
Healy became the 2nd Bot player in the book when he received a caution in the 77th minute for a late challenge in midfield.
A minute later Talbot came close to regaining the lead. A quickly taken free kick saw Stephen Wilson release his brother Graham down the left. He flighted it over to the back post where Samson’s header almost squeezed past Shaw at his left post.
With 10 minutes remaining Talbot spurned another good chance to move ahead. A free kick was awarded out on the right & Shankland whipped it over. Aiden Wilson ran onto it & met it 5 yards out but lifted his shot over the crossbar.
Tucker now made a 2nd change with Glasgow on in place of Samson.
Glasgow was barely on the pitch when he had a gilt edged chance. Graham Wilson fed the ball out to Shankland on the left flank & he slung over a great ball that Glasgow met at the back post but with the goal gaping he made a poor contact & it flew over the bar.
With 5 minutes remaining Talbot nearly paid for their missed chances. Gill paced away down the right & slid it across the face of goal. Robertson ran onto it & looked certain to score but Leishman showed why he’s the best keeper in Junior football; diving full length to his left to turn his shot over the bar.
Just when it looked like we were heading for a replay Talbot snatched a late winner in the final minute of regulation time. Graham Wilson did well on the left before slipping a pass through to Glasgow whose shot from a tight angle was blocked behind by the keeper for a corner. Shankland swung it into the back post where DWAYNE HYSLOP shrugged off his marker to head home and send Talbot into the quarter-finals.
Not one of Talbot’s best performances, not by a long chalk, but mission accomplished as they enter the draw for the quarters. Next up, Talbot are back on league duty as they travel through to Govan to face Rossvale.
Auchinleck Talbot – Leishman, Armstrong, Aiden Wilson, McPherson, McCracken, Healy, Hyslop, Stephen Wilson, Graham Wilson, Samson, Boylan
Subs – Shankland, Glasgow, McDowall, White, Pope
Tayport – Jack Shaw, Strachan, Sturrock,, Ness, Whyte, Rollo, Lyall Shaw, Jamie Mackie, Dayle Robertson, Gill, Wilson
Subs – D Robertson, O’Brien, Breen, Middleton, Marc Mackie