Kilwinning Rangers v Auchinleck Talbot

Talbot hit 6 as they hit top gear to blow away the Buffs at a wet, windswept Kilwinning sports stadium.

The Buffs were intent on creating their own problems in the opening spell, trying and failing to play the ball out from the back whilst Talbot snapped into a high press. In the opening minute Shankland latched onto a poor ball from the back and played it through for Boylan who was just beaten to it by Gordon.

Three minutes in and Armstrong pounced on a poor clearance and headed for the box before brought down – resulting in a Talbot free kick 25 yards out. MICHAEL WARDROPE took it and Gordon could only stand and watch as it sailed over the wall and under the bar to put Talbot into an early lead.

Kilwinning responded positively and put the Bot defence under a period of pressure as they pegged Talbot back and won a string of corners but the Bot defence held out.

With 17 mins on the clock Talbot won a penalty. McPherson flighted a free kick up the right that Graham Wilson headed on and when Park went down under a challenge from the back the ref pointed to the spot. MARK SHANKLAND stepped up and sent the keeper the wrong way to double Talbot’s lead.

The penalty award didn’t go down well with the Buffs bench and before play could resume one of the coaching staff was shown a red card and made the short journey up to the clubhouse.

In the 19th minute Kilwinning won a free kick out on the left which Wood curled into the centre where it came off a defender’s head and dropped just over the crossbar. The resultant corner was whipped into the back post but no one read it and it headed out for a goal kick.

Talbot got in behind the home defence in the 27th minute. Graham Wilson’s bending ball up the left found Wardrope in behind and he fired a good early ball across that just eluded Boylan in front of goal.

Kilwinning were showing signs of frustration and with half an hour gone Marshall opted to go for goal from a free kick all of 40 yards out and unsurprisingly hoofed it miles over.

Two minutes later Talbot were back on the attack when Wardrope slipped a pass through the defence. Boylan was just beaten to it by Gordon and the loose ball came to Shankland who couldn’t get his shot away and had to settle for a corner.

The Buffs picked up a caution in the 36th minute when a defender went through the back of Shankland.

Talbot were looking dangerous on the break and in the 38th minute Boylan skinned Nicoll before racing up the left wing. He cut it back toward Wardrope but he was well challenged inside the area before he could get the shot off.

Five minutes before the interval Boylan received a yellow card following an aerial challenge with the Buffs keeper and a minute later Nicoll was cautioned for flooring Shankland.

In the closing moments of the half Talbot won a free kick outside the box for a trip on Park. Wardrope angled the ball across trying to find Graham Wilson but it was just taken off him by a deflection for a corner and Talbot had to settle for the two goal cushion.

Talbot had no thought of resting on their laurels and made the early running after the re-start. Boylan freed Shankland on the right edge of the area but he was well-tackled as he tried to cut inside.

Stafford then did well, bursting between 2 defenders, to make the bye line and drill it low across goal where Gordon smothered it at the near post.

Kilwinning now made a change with Gavin Millar on for Chris Millar.

The Bot won a free kick just wide of the box in the 50th minute when M Millar caught Boylan as he raced onto a ball over the top. Wardrope took it and swept a great ball beyond the back post where McCracken met it unchallenged but he sent his header into the side-netting.

Leishman wasn’t called upon too often but when he was he proved equal to the task. He made a good stop to his left to turn away a powerful drive from the edge of the area and also recovered in time to block the rebound, though it wouldn’t have counted in any case as the assistant flagged for offside.

Graham Wilson was the next into the book for – receiving a booking for an aerial challenge in the Buffs half.

Talbot now made a change with Boylan going off following a heavy knock to be replaced by Samson.

The game was effectively over as a contest in the 63rd minute when Talbot grabbed their 3rd. Samson hunted down a ball in behind the defence and pressured Gordon into a hurried clearance. He hit it straight out to Graham Wilson who teed it up for MARK SHANKLAND and he took his time before slotting the ball home.

The Buffs now made a triple change with MacIntyre, Marshall and Lamont making way for Lewis, MacCalman and Stuart.

Gordon prevented Talbot from extending their lead in the 66th minute. Samson met Wardrope’s corner from the left and his powerful header was well saved by the keeper.

In the 73rd minute Talbot made a double switch with Taylor and Ballantyne coming on for Shankland and Graham Wilson.

With the Buffs pushing bodies forward they were vulnerable on the break and were nearly caught out with 15 mins remaining. Samson swept a quick ball right to left to find Wardrope racing in on goal but the ball broke off him and ran through to the keeper.

With 12 mins remaining Talbot made a further change with new signing Ali Boyle on for his debut in place of Wardrope and the new face made an early impact as his accurate early pass released KIER SAMSON through the centre to tuck home goal no. 4 in the 81st minute.

A minute later Boyle hit another good early ball but this time Gordon was quickly out his box to beat Samson to it and clear for a shy.

Five minutes from time Talbot made it 5. Samson sped away on the left and quickly switched it to the opposite flank where ROSS TAYLOR cut inside into the box before placing it beyond Gordon.

In the 87th minute Samson appeared set to race through on the end of Taylor’s well-weighted pass but he was halted in his tracks by a dubious offside decision.

In the final minute of normal time the Buffs were reduced to 10 men. Armstrong was caught by a late tackle and at first the referee only produced a yellow before he belatedly realised that he’d already booked him and sent him off – with Kilwinning’s strip design it was difficult to see which number he wore.

Talbot wrapped up the scoring in injury time. Taylor showed neat footwork inside the area to skip away from MacCalman who promptly went through the back of him. The ref pointed to the spot and KIER SAMSON drilled it past Gordon to make the final score 6-0 to Talbot.

Off the top of my head, this must be one of Talbot’s largest winning margins on the road in a league game, certainly for some time and a good 3 points on the board and boost to the goal difference.

Next up, Talbot are back in cup action this Saturday when they host Muirkirk in the West of Scotland.

Kilwinning Rangers – Gordon, Boland, Mark Millar, Nicoll, Marshall, Chris Millar, Wood, MacIntyre, Mackin, Collins, Lamont

Subs – Torrance, Lewis, MacCalman, Stuart, Gavin Millar, McMahon, Henderson

Auchinleck Talbot – Leishman, Stafford, Aiden Wilson, McPherson, McCracken, Armstrong, Wardrope, Park, Graham Wilson, Boylan, Shankland

Subs – Taylor, Samson, Mason, Crawford, Ballantyne, Boyle

Kilwinning Rangers v Auchinleck Talbot

‘Shankers’ goes on the early attack but gets stopped in his tracks.


Obviously Mark has found something funny but Wullie Boyd certainly didn’t.


HALF A CHANCE FOR TALBOT! Glasgow vents his frustration, as he sees his shot smash into the side netting.


CHANCE!!! Talbot breath a sigh of relief, as Kilwinning miss a glorious chance to score from right in front of goal but they can only watch the ball sail over the crossbar.


Kilwinning clear the danger before Samson can race into the box.


Jamie Glasgow fights for possession, as Gareth closely watches.


Keir Samson looked all set to break free but the defender manages to get a foot to the ball in order to thwart him.


From a corner, Armstrong tries to get on the end of it but the danger gets cleared by the Buffs’ defence.


Shankland evades the challenge and races away with the ball.


The pain is written all over the Buffs player’s face after a hefty challenge.


The Kilwinning bench don’t look too happy with Mark after he fouls his opponent.


With half-time looming, Craig McCracken has a dig from long range but his shot gets blocked.


PENALTY!!! The Buffs get awarded a penalty early in the second half after a handball from Talbot, where Big Andy goes the right way and…


…pulls off a great save but…


…Kilwinning are first to the rebound and smash the ball home. 1-0.


Talbot look dejected, as the boys in blue and white go nuts after scoring.


‘Gee’ tries his luck from a very tight angle but fails to find the back of the net.


Glasgow lets his feelings known to the referee.


OH-SO-CLOSE!!! McCracken goes extremely close to equalising with a powerful close range header but the ‘keeper pulls off a great save to stop him from scoring.


The Talbot bench air their views.


‘Gee’ takes a tumble, while Gareth races on up the wing.


ANOTHER CHANCE FOR TALBOT!!! Graham Wilson sends a looping header towards goal but the Buffs ‘keeper manages to get both hands to the ball.


‘Shankers’ tries his luck straight from a corner but the ‘keeper gets a hand to it and palms it over the crossbar.


The full-time whistle gets blown and the Kilwinning players ‘go wild in the aisles’ after a hard fought victory.



Talbot entered the winter break on a low note as they slumped to their 2nd 1-0 defeat in a row; losing narrowly to the Buffs at the Kilwinning Sports Centre.

The 1st half made an excellent case for summer football with little to keep the fans warm on a Baltic day.

The Bot had a half chance early on when Samson burst free on the left but he fired into the side-netting.

Kilwinning had the half’s only real chance in the 8th minute. Ramsay’s cross was blocked behind by Aiden Wilson and when the corner came over from the right it skimmed off Graham Wilson’s head and fell kindly for Wood but the full-back hoofed it over the bar from 8 yards out.

In the 17th minute Samson looked like he was going to race through on goal but a Buffs defender got back to make a timely sliding tackle to knock it back to the keeper.

Kilwinning were slightly edging it on possession but neither side were asking any questions of the opposing goalie and the only other noteworthy incidents of the 1st half were bookings for Shankland for a foul on the touchline and Graham Wilson also had his name taken in the 40th minute.

Kilwinning came out with a bit more intent at the start of the 2nd half and this proved to be the difference on the day. The Buffs forced a corner down the right within a minute of the restart which was cleared at the near post; however the linesman’s flag was raised and after consulting him with the referee awarded a penalty. Hanvey took it and although Leishman guessed right & did well to block it to his left he was helpless to prevent HANVEY bundling home the rebound from close range.

Talbot lifted it after falling behind and Barclay was called into action on 56 minutes when Graham Wilson raced down the left of the penalty area. He tried to square it across the face of goal and it took a deflection off a defender but Barclay was able to turn it behind. The resultant corner was played into the back post area where it bobbled about for a bit before the defence eventually cleared.

With 59 minutes gone Glasgow turned inside the area & drilled a shot on target but it was comfortably held by Barclay.

In the 63rd minute Glasgow received a caution for kicking the ball away after the umpteenth marginal decision went the home side’s way.

The Buffs had went quiet since the goal but threatened to double their lead in the 65th minute. A long shy from the right was cleared at the near post but came back out to Monti and he cut in off the right flank before shooting just over the crossbar.

Talbot won a free kick out wide on the left in the 68th minute when Samson was obstructed. This also resulted in a booking for the Buffs player but who it was I couldn’t say as Kilwinning’s choice of having silhouette’s as opposed to numbers on their shirts made it all but impossible to tell.

Shankland took the free kick and swept it over to the back post where McCracken met it & directed a header for goal that Barclay saved well at his left post. The ball broke loose but didn’t fall Talbot’s way and the defence cleared.

Kilwinning picked up a further caution in the 75th minute when Monti was booked.

11 minutes from time Talbot made their first change with Mason coming on in place of Healy.

A minute later the Buffs almost added a second. A long ball was floated up the left which Collins did well to keep in play. He then surged in off the left touchline into the area and fired a shot across goal and wide of the far post.

After this it was 10 minutes of one-way traffic with Talbot pegging the home side back in their final third looking for an equaliser.

A half chance came Talbot’s way in the 83rd minute when Aiden Wilson picked out Mason on the overlap. His cross to the back post was met by Samson and his header fell to Graham Wilson who hit the target but without the power to trouble the keeper.

With 5 minutes remaining Talbot made another change with Boyd making way for Hyslop.

Talbot’s next chance came via a corner from the right. Shankland’s first ball in was well defended but it came back out wide to him and when he crossed it in a 2nd time Graham Wilson got his head to it but it flew straight at the keeper.

It wasn’t Talbot’s day and this was underlined in the 87th minute. Samson had an effort from 12 yards and his angled drive nearly squirmed through the keeper but he got enough of a deflection on it to send it up and over the crossbar. When the corner came in to the back post Barclay took command of it and punched clear under pressure.

A minute from time Talbot missed another opportunity to level. Glasgow whipped over a great ball from the right that went straight across the face of goal to Aiden Wilson beyond the back post but he lashed it off target from a tight angle.

As the game entered injury time Talbot forced another couple of corners – the first of which Barclay did well to turn over his own bar as the in swinger came in from the right but the Buffs defended the 2nd one well and the ref’s whistle signalled the end.

That’s it for Talbot for 2021 and it’s not until January 8th Talbot are back in action when they travel to Dalmellington to face Craigmark in the Junior cup. Merry Christmas when it comes to all in Talbot land.

Kilwinning Rangers – Barclay, Wood, McGowan, Syme, Caldwell, Hanvey, Monti, Gardiner, Ramsay, McColm, Colllins

Subs – F Anderson, D Anderson, McArthur, Millar, Crawford, Henderson

Auchinleck Talbot – Leishman, Boyd, Aiden Wilson, McPherson, Craig McCracken, Armstrong, Healy, Graham Wilson, Samson, Shankland, Glasgow

Subs – Robbie McCracken, Hyslop, Mason, Lyle, Hewitt

Kilwinning Rangers v Auchinleck Talbot

A decent crowd turned up to watch Talbot take on an upbeat Kilwinning side who had just come off a 3-1 win at Clydebank. However the game turned out to be a battle in midfield with both sides failing to make any clear cut chances. Talbot did have the better of the second half but rarely troubled the home keeper. In all a draw was a fair result and Talbot collected a hard earned point.