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
PHOTOGRAPHS BY PAUL FLYNN.
Talbot continued with their assault on the league leaders with an emphatic 5-0 win over league strugglers Benburb.
They went 2-0 ahead in the opening five minutes when poor defending gave Gareth Armstrong to pick out Kier Samson who glanced a header into an empty net.
A few minutes later Mark Shankland increased the lead when he scored from the spot. Talbot continued to dominate and some stout defending and a goalkeeping display of the highest order kept Talbot at bay
In the second half it was business as usual as Talbot went on the hunt for more goals. Their third one came from the head of Dwayne Hyslop, and then a brace by Kier Samson who was a constant thorn in the Benburb defence.
Kier had the honour of scoring Talbot’s 100th competitive goal this season and going by Talbot’s recent expoits, its not to say we could score another 100. However next league match is away to Rossvale.
PHOTOGRAPHS BY PAUL FLYNN.
MURRAYS MATCH REPORT
A 2nd half surge saw Talbot race through the gears & put Beith to the sword as the Bot started the new year in style with a 4-0 win.
The first purposeful attack of the match saw Stephen Wilson play a one-two with Boylan outside the area & attempt to run onto the return pass. He tumbled over in the area but the ref waved away his appeal.
The opening spell was highly competitive but neither side had anything to show for it other than an exchange of corners.
It looked like Graham Wilson had got in behind Beith’s defence in the 14th minute when he raced onto Samson’s pass but a marginal offside call went against him.
The Bot threatened Beith’s goal in the 19th minute. Sheridan was penalised for barging over Graham Wilson 35 yards out & Stephen Wilson swept in a good free kick to the back past. Beith couldn’t properly clear it & it came to Lyle on the touchline. Graham Wilson met his cross & looped a header beyond the far post where Samson dinked it back into play before it was bundled behind for a corner.
In the 22nd minute both sides came close in quick succession. Firstly, Christie slid a pass through toward McKenzie that forced Leishman off his line to smother at the striker’s feet. Leishman then launched a counterattack when he hurled the ball out to the right to find Samson racing away. He sped down the touchline before firing a cross beyond Sheridan that Graham Wilson met on the stretch 6 yards out but he couldn’t keep his shot down.
Two minutes later Talbot had a lucky escape. Ramsay squared the ball to Wilson just outside the penalty area and his shot was travelling on target before taking a major deflection & speeding just wide of the left post.
The first booking of the afternoon came in the 29th minute when Graham Wilson cut inside Wilson who obstructed him resulting in a caution for Beith’s midfielder & a Bot freekick 20 yards out that Talbot failed to make the most of.
Graham Wilson came close to breaking the deadlock when he met Aiden Wilson’s cross but glanced his header wide of the left post and a minute later he was inches from connecting with Boylan’s low ball in from the left at the near post.
Talbot’s next effort came in the 35th minute. Beith failed to deal with Samson’s long throw & the ball broke to Boylan 20 yards out & he stroked a shot narrowly past Grindlay’s right post.
Boylan was soon involved again. He raced onto a ball over the top & burst into the area only to take a heavy touch & was forced wide by Grindlay. He retrieved the ball at the byline and cut back in field before trying a shot from a tight angle that was blocked.
With 40 mins gone Boylan had his name taken for a late challenge on Ramsay.
In the closing minutes of the half the visitors were forced into a change when Sheridan limped off to be replaced by McMahon and that was it for a keenly contested 1st half.
The 2nd half was only 6 minutes old when Talbot made the crucial breakthrough. Stephen Wilson ploughed past a couple of weak challenges down the left. It fell to Boylan inside the area & he pulled it back & across to KEIR SAMSON who stroked it past Grindlay from 15 yards.
The goal galvanised Talbot who began to push Beith back in search of a second.
Beith made a 2nd change, in the 59th minute, when McLean replaced McKenzie.
Talbot made their first change in the 64th minute with Shankland coming on for Boylan and Beith soon completed their changes with Prior replacing Ramsay.
The next goal was going to be pivotal & it went Talbot’s way in the 71st minute. McCracken was caught as he burst forward resulting in a free kick 30 yards out. With everyone anticipating a direct shot, Shankland instead slid a pass wide of the wall to GRAHAM WILSON & he steered a left foot shot across Grindlay to make it 2-0.
With quarter of an hour remaining Talbot nearly added a third. Aiden Wilson carried out of defence before finding Graham Wilson in the centre of the pitch. He hooked it over his shoulder to release Samson who outpaced the defence but was unable to beat Grindlay who raced off his line to make the block.
Tucker now made a further change with Healy on for Samson & the switch paid off as Talbot extended their lead in the 76th minute.
Shankland lifted a cross over from the right that was retrieved on the far side by Healy. He whipped it back over where Shankland met it on the volley & his shot back across goal squirmed past Grindlay & GRAHAM WILSON followed up to rifle it home from close range.
With 10 minutes remaining Talbot made their final change when Lyle was forced off injured to be replaced by White.
Talbot were sitting comfortably & looking to add to their tally which they nearly did in the 82nd minute. Docherty swept the legs from Shankland resulting in a free kick out on the right. Shankland delivered the free kick across the face of goal where Graham Wilson just failed to connect with his head.
Five minutes from time & Talbot cut open the Beith defence again. Shankland gathered on the left & played a great ball across to find White free on the right of the area; however he didn’t catch his strike cleanly & McGlinchey cleared from the goalmouth.
The goal wasn’t long delayed though & a minute later Talbot completed the scoring. Shankland cut in off the left & swept over a cross. Two Beith defenders went for it & only succeeded in getting each other’s way as they knocked it straight to GRAHAM WILSON who tucked it home from close range to complete Beith’s misery & his own hat-trick.
Another excellent home win for the Bot who are back on cup duty next Saturday as they travel through to Kilwinning to face the Buffs in the West.
Auchinleck Talbot – Leishman, Lyle, Aiden Wilson, McPherson, McCracken, Armstrong, Hyslop, Stephen Wilson, Graham Wilson, Boylan, Samson
Subs – Shankland, McDowall, Healy, Pope, White
Beith Juniors – Grindlay, McGlinchey, Milliken, Docherty, Sheridan, Wilson, Christie, Frize, McIlroy, McKenzie, Ramsay
Subs – Noble, McLean, McMahon, Prior, Zaliska
MURRAYS MATCH REPORT
The Bot fans got an early Christmas present as Talbot brushed aside Ladeside to narrow the gap at the top.
The visitors made the brighter opening but had nothing to show for it but for a long range McGuinness effort straight at Leishman within the opening minute and Talbot showed them the way to goal when they took the lead in the 13th minute.
Graham Wilson surged through midfield before sending it right to STEPHEN WILSON who knocked it round Mitchell, gathered it on the other side & slotted a low shot past Hughes inside the right post.
Minutes later C Hughes came to the Blasties rescue. Shankland’s reverse ball sent Glasgow through & he drilled it across goal where Hughes stretched to turn it behind.
Talbot came close to doubling their lead in the 24th minute. Hyslop won a 50/50 & knocked it on to Glasgow who raced clear of the defence before firing a shot just wide of the right post.
A minute later the Blasties threatened at the other end. Mitchell cut in past Stephen Wilson & prodded a shot straight at Leishman from the edge of the area.
Kilbirnie gave Talbot a scare when they won a free kick out on the stand side. It was angled deep beyond the far post where Mitchell climbed to head it back across goal & it had to be cleared behind for the corner.
A swift passing move by Talbot saw the Bot work the ball down the right between Glasgow & Stephen Wilson before it was laid back to Lyle. He slung a high cross beyond the far post where Shankland volleyed off target.
The next goal was going to be crucial & it went Talbot’s way in the 41st minute. Glasgow’s cross field ball floated over O’Byrne & was gathered by Shankland on the left of the area. He promptly squared it for GRAHAM WILSON to side-foot it home from 12 yards to put Talbot 2 goals ahead.
Kilbirnie pressed hard to try & grab a goal back & McGuinness blasted a shot at goal from 30 yards that was blocked en route to target. It fell to Mitchell on the left & he lobbed over a cross that Leishman couldn’t take under the challenge of Dickie but he recovered swiftly to smother the ball & Talbot went in 2-0 ahead at the interval.
Talbot made a change during the break with Healy replacing Shankland.
The game could have been done & dusted 4 minutes into the 2nd half. McPherson pinged a ball out from the back to find Graham Wilson & he switched it into the path of Glasgow who burst into the area but he slid his shot just past the right post.
Two minutes later the Bot came close again. Healy found Stephen Wilson speeding clear down the right & he hammered a shot over the bar.
The visitors now made a change with McLaren replacing Muir.
Against the run of play the Blasties pulled a goal back after 57 mins. Slack defending allowed MITCHELL the chance to stab a shot at goal that came off the foot of the post & he followed up to slam home the rebound.
Talbot responded in the best way, regaining their two goal cushion within a minute. Stephen Wilson whipped over a dangerous cross that flew across the face of goal. Healy retrieved it at the by line & floated a cross onto the head of DWAYNE HYLSOP who nodded home from close range.
On the hour mark Talbot turned defence into attack. Leishman easily gathered a Ladeside corner before bowling the ball out to McCracken. He carried it up the right before switching play to Graham Wilson on the opposite wing. He tried to square it across to McCracken who’d continued his run into the area but it was cut out.
With 20 minutes remaining Tucker made a double switch with Graham Wilson & Glasgow making way for Samson & Boylan.
Samson was involved not long after joining the fray. Stephen Wilson’s persistence paid off when he robbed C Hughes & knocked it out to Samson. He cut inside onto his left foot & angled a shot across the keeper & wide of the far post.
It was game over in the 77th minute when O’BYRNE met a cross from the right & shanked his clearance over his keeper and into his own net to make it 4-1.
The dust hadn’t settled before Talbot grabbed their fifth. Hughes took fractionally too long dealing with a back pass & was closed down by BRYAN BOYLAN who blocked his clearance & rolled it into the empty net.
With six minutes remaining Kilbirnie snatched a late consolation effort. Mitchell looked to be caught as he nicked inside Armstrong & Talbot stopped as though expecting a free kick. MITCHELL played on & let fly from 20 yards & his shot skimmed off the surface & bobbled over Leishman’s outstretched arm to complete the scoring.
Another good home win for the Bot who are back on their travels next Saturday when they visit Cumbernauld to face Rob Roy.
Auchinleck Talbot – Leishman, Lyle, Aiden Wilson, McPherson, McCracken, Armstrong, Hyslop, Stephen Wilson, Graham Wilson, Glasgow, Shankland
Subs – Boylan, Samson, Healy, White, Young
Kilbirnie Ladeside – K Hughes, Woods, Mitchell, C Hughes, O’Byrne, McGuinness, Finlay, Muir, Craig, Dickie, Ramsay
Subs – McVey, Longworth, Scullion, McLaren, Wilton (gk)
PHOTOGRAPHS BY PAUL FLYNN.
PHOTOGRAPHS BY PAUL FLYNN.
PHOTOGRAPHS BY PAUL FLYNN.
Talbot came oh so close to claiming another SPL scalp in the Scottish Cup but a soft late penalty saw Arbroath live to fight another day.
The Bot nearly made a dream start when Pope let fly from distance inside the first minute & Gaston was forced to turn it wide of the post.
The home support loudly appealed for a spot kick in the 8th minute when Samson appeared to be barged over from behind inside the area but the officials waved it away. The ball was then swept to the other end where Spence was nudged over 30 yards out & this time the ref gave the free kick. Linn took it but drilled it straight into the wall.
With 11 minutes on the clock Talbot took the lead via a special finish. Graham Wilson showed good control out on the left before laying the ball down the line to Boylan. He switched it inside to DWAYNE HYSLOP who curled a peach of a shot beyond Gaston & inside the far left post to put Talbot ahead.
Two minutes later Boylan won Talbot a corner down the left. It was taken short to Stephen Wilson & he whipped a good cross into the centre that O’Brien headed clear.
Arbroath now had a decent spell of pressure but nothing to show for it. Linn gathered on the left & squared it inside to Donnelly whose shot from 20 yards was blocked. The visitors next attack saw McKenna play it into Spence on the right of the area but McCracken was quickly across to snuff out the danger.
The referee wasn’t winning any friends at Beechwood and didn’t win any new admirers when two decisions in quick succession went against the Bot. He awarded Arbroath a free kick just outside the Talbot box when an Arbroath player went down. Hamilton took it but slipped as ran up to to the ball & hit it tamely into the wall.
At the opposite end Stephen Wilson fed the ball out right to find Samson & he looked to be impeded by Hamilton as he cut inside him but the referee saw nothing amiss.
Leishman produced a top class save to keep Talbot ahead in the 28th minute. A ball from the right found its way to Murphy 16 yards out & his shot skipped off the turf & was heading inside the right post until Leishman pushed it wide.
Talbot’s keeper produced an equally impressive stop four minutes later. The Bot defence failed to cut out a diagonal ball over from the left & O’Brien ran onto it on the right of the area. He hammered a shot at goal but Leishman had flew off his line to narrow the angle & make the block.
A minute later Talbot won a free kick inside the Arbroath half when Samson was caught. Pope lifted it beyond the back post where Hyslop headed it back across toward Samson but he was crowded out.
The Bot had another half chance minutes later. Hyslop was bundled over in midfield & Pope arrowhead the free kick out to Graham Wilson on the left. He instantly controlled it & slipped a pass into Boylan inside the area but he took a heavy first touch & the chance was lost.
In the 37th minute Graham Wilson latched onto a ball up the right & knocked it inside to Samson who burst into the right of the penalty area. He hit a tempting ball across the face of goal that went a begging as there was no one running in at the far post to supply the finish.
Five minutes before the interval a long throw from the right broke to McKenna 16 yards out; however, he was quickly closed down & had to take it first time, firing well over the bar.
The half ended with a Talbot attack fizzling out and an Arbroath counterattack. Pope lifted it up the line to find Graham Wilson who held the ball up before switching play to the other wing to find Samson breaking into the area but the ball broke away from him. Hamilton now played it quickly into the Bot half where Hyslop bundled Murphy over resulting in a free kick 30 yards out. Linn took it short, squaring it for O’Brien to hit but he blasted it well wide and Talbot trooped off one ahead.
The visitors made a change at half-time with Murphy remaining in the clubhouse & Stewart on in his stead.
Both sides were playing at hammer & tongs pace and the 2nd half started evenly with neither side giving any quarter and neither side making any headway in the final third.
The first opening of the 2nd period came Talbot’s way in the 58th minute. Samson picked up on the right & angled a great early ball over to find Graham Wilson in space on the left. He tried to play in Hyslop on the right of the box but there was too much on his pass.
A minute later Arbroath threatened when Gold got free on the right & whipped a great cross over to the back post but there were no runners at the far post.
On the hour mark Gold was on defensive duties when he did well to cut out Samson’s ball in from the right that was heading for Boylan til he managed to cut it out & slide it out for the shy.
Arbroath were becoming frustrated & this showed when O’Brien carried it forward & tried a wildly ambitious effort from 35 yards that sailed harmlessly over the bar.
The visitors now made a further change with Campbell on in place of Spence.
In the 64th minute Linn raced up the right before firing a low ball into the near post. It was cut out and came to Gold who sprawled over looking for a penalty but the ref wasn’t interested.
A minute later Talbot had a good chance on the break. Space opened up for Boylan as he ran towards the box down the left; he had Graham Wilson in space to his right but failed to pick him out and the move came to nothing.
Donnelly ought to have levelled it in the 66th minute. A good ball over from the left found him stretching to get on the end of it in front of goal. He made contact but somehow lifted it over the bar from inside the 6-yard area.
Tucker now made a double switch with Glasgow & Shankland replacing Boylan & Samson.
Arbroath threatened again soon after when a ball from the left broke kindly for Stewart 20 yards out. He rifled a fierce shot at goal which Pope headed clear.
The game was becoming stretched & Talbot put together a decent move when McCracken flighted a ball down the right to find Glasgow just outside the area. He lifted an early cross in that Wheatley headed clear. Talbot kept the pressure on though & were awarded with a free kick 20 yards out when Graham Wilson was wrestled down out on the right. Shankland delivered it into the danger zone where Stephen Wilson just failed to connect in front of goal but it wouldn’t have counted anyway as the linesman’s flag went up.
Shankland was involved again in the 73rd minute. He slid a pass through toward Glasgow that would have sent him clean through on goal but O’Brien did well to intercept.
A second goal for Talbot would have finished it and the Bot had a half chance with 12 minutes remaining. Leishman launched a free kick down field which Hyslop nodded on to Glasgow on the right. He played it across the area where it fell to Graham Wilson 15 yards out but he sliced his shot wide of target.
With nine minutes remaining Arbroath made their final change when Kader came on for Linn.
Six minutes from time Talbot conceded a soft penalty. A ball from the right came into the area & Graham Wilson went to challenge Stewart. There didn’t appear to be any contact but the ref judged that his boot had been raised and pointed to the spot. MCKENNA stepped up to the plate & although Leishman guessed right he had no chance as he drilled it low inside the left post.
Talbot now made their last change with McDowall coming on for Healy.
Right at the end Arbroath had a late chance to sneak the win. Stewart got away on the right & delivered a dangerous cross into the centre that Leishman stretched to punch away. It came out to McKenna 15 yards out but his shot was charged down by McPherson.
The final whistle saw the Bot fans with mixed feelings, pride at the display warring with disappointment the Bot hadn’t held out for the win and so now Talbot make the trek north to Arbroath this Wednesday coming for the replay at Gayfield.
Auchinleck Talbot – Leishman, Lyle, Pope, McPherson, McCracken, Healy, Hyslop, Stephen Wilson, Graham Wilson, Boylan, Samson
Subs – Glasgow, Shankland, McDowall, Young, White, Aiden Wilson, Hewitt
Arbroath – Gaston, Hamilton, Little, O’Brien, Wheatley, Gold, McKenna, Murphy, Spence, Donnelly, Linn
Subs – Doris, Swankie, Kader, Stewart, Stirling, Campbell, Jamieson