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Bothkennar 3-2 Carse Thistle

RG  Monday, March 25, 2002  17:57 GMT


A magnificent performance by Bothkennar's goalkeeper and 2 dreadful defensive errors ended Carse's already slim hopes of winning this year's League title. A slightly depleted squad travelled to Skinflats expecing a tough match. The line up was slightly experimental, with Farky starting centre midfield and Mark Cameron back in at right mid. Carse started poorly and from a slack RG pass Bothkennar's number 7 Gaz B, who we all knew from the guestbook, ran through on goal, but RG made up for the error by getting in a tackle at the last minute. Having Jazza on the left provided width well and he almost opened the scoring, but the Bothkennar keeper tipped round the post. Around 20 minutes into the game Bothkennar's MG chased a hopeful pass which Gary Paterson was shepherding back to Stevie. But a breakdown in communication saw Stevie retreat, MG nipped in and rounded him. Gary chased back and got in a slidng tackle which forced the player to the ground. Stevie though was in no mans land and seemed to be in a daydream as the grounded MG had all the time in the world to get up and prod the ball over the goal line. Carse responded brilliantly to this setback and 5 minutes later were back in the game, Jazza skipped past two men on the left and swung in a brilliant cross for George to run onto and fire a downward header past the keeper. Carse pressed for the lead and chances fell left right and centre, Farky missing the best of these from an RG cross, firing wide from 6 yards out.


The second half started like the first had ended. Carse pressed for the lead and Kirk Dennehy had a great left foot effort parried by the Bothkennar keeper. But Carse were leaving wide gaps in the defence. And sure enough were caught out. A long diagonal ball between Gary and Sparra was inch perfect for the Bothkennar player to run onto, (although that could be because he was standing about 3 yards offside at the time) and he in turn hit an inch perfect finish past the helpless Stevie. Carse were throwing everything at Bothkennar. Another effort from Kirk, this time from a free kick, was again well saved by the Bothkennar keeper. Jazza and Mark both had efforts well held by the big man too. But the task was made almost impossible when terrible defending gave the Bothkennar striker all the room to head home high into the net from a free kick with Stevie watching from his knees. Carse neede a lifeline and got one as Kirk headed in well from a Jazza free kick to make it 3-2. Changes were made and Gary came off for Farky an RG went on for Mark as Carse pelted Bothkennar. Goerge Haney had a great header tipped wide by their keeper from a Harry Bruce cross. Then a goalmouth scramble saw the ball blocked three times by Bothkennar defenders, before the clearance that set up a counter attack. Had it not been for an injury to Sparra they should have had a penalty as Stevie pulled their striker back after his initial good save. Bothkennar had their brief moments in the second half, and hit the bar from a corner. Other Carse chances fell to Andy T and Harry, who also had shots well saved by the Bothkennar keeper. It was in fact an alright performance, but lacked the finishing Carse are capable of, and luck. Bothkennar took their chances and that was the difference. Carse's man of the match is disputed but credit to the Bothkennar keeper who is man of the match overall by far.

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