GLENAFTON ATHLETIC 0 Kilsyth Rangers 0
First and foremost both teams deserve tremendous credit for serving up a hard fought competitive encounter in such attrocious conditions. The heavy rain had been relentless prior to kick-off and continued to revisit the game throughout the ninety mimutes. Conditions underfoot were extremely tricky and certainly attributed to several of the mistimed tackles that punctuated the match from start to finish.
The Glens started brightly and Scott Houston dispossesed the hesitant Kilsyth defender but there were no takers for his square ball into the box. Minutes later he was at the heart of an excellent one-two with Zander Allan, with the youngster's shot bringing out a great reflex from the Kilsyth goalie at his near post.
A pattern quickly emerged whereby both teams enjoyed large periods of sustained pressure. The visitors, despite the conditions, began to get their passing game together and brightened up the gloom with some fine build up play. Much of this came through their No. 7 who in turn would find the tireless and tricky left winger. Gary Matthews did well to save a certain goal with his feet, as Rangers broke into the Glens box; then made another fine save only to see the rebound fall to the Rangers' striker but his thunderbolt shot was blocked by one of his own players, in a most painful fashion!
The Glens play was less creative and long balls up field were being easily snapped up by the visitors defence. Willie Howie then took matters into in his own hands and was unfortunate not to open the scoring after a powerful run into the box, which included a sweet one-two, but his shot was well saved. Allan then appeared to have his shirt tugged on the edge of the box, but was missed by the referee and before the close Stevie Agnew blasted a shot over the bar. Half-time Glenafton 0 Kilsyth 0
The breakthrough almost came for the Glens in the first attack of the second half when Zander Allan beat the offside trap leaving two defenders slipping and sliding in his wake, but as the Rangers goalie advanced the striker appeared to be caught in two minds, whether to shoot or round the goalie; in the end the keeper came out on top safely clutching the half-shot. The Glens midfield was now seeing more of the ball with Tony Murphy putting in a powerful second-half shift and their build up play was now much more inventive. Allan was released down the right wing where he evaded the defender brilliantly to get to bye-line but his cross into the box was just behind the advancing Houston.
Kilsyth, however, weathered the storm in more ways than one and stuck to their , passing game on a surface that was become increasingly more greasy. The used both flanks to effect but in particular the left one and it was no surprise that it was from here that their best chance of the game came. No. 11 outpaced two Glens defender before putting in a great cross, which was headed powerfully towards the top corner of the net, only to be stopped brilliantly by man-of-the match Matthews , and he was also the first to react to scramble the rebound to safety. Rangers were now back in the driving seat but couldn't find a way past the resolute Glens defence and finally had to resort to launching long balls into the box which time and again were headed back out by the Glens back-four.
Substitute Brian Miller's fresh legs saw the game briefly swing back to the Glens and they began to win a few free kicks in dangerous positions but it was Kilsyth's defence turn to hold firm. There was a half-hearted shout from Miller for a penalty but the referee appeared to call it right. The same player was barged in the back on the outskirts of the box but again, wrongly this time ,the ref waved play on and the ball broke down the right wing. John McCaig brought the move to an end with a robust tackle at the touchline and the Kilsyth player was fortunate not to see a straight red for his reaction after the ensuing melee had been disbanded.
Kilsyth's final chance of the game came through a later corner-kick but this flew across the goalmouth with no takers. Final Score : Glenafton 0 Kilsyth 0
Both sides created numerous chances and at the end of a dismally wet day a draw was probably a fair result.
Glenafton: Matthews; Paterson, McGregor,McCaig, Stewart; Bingham (Mitchell), Murphy, Howie; Houston (Miller), Allan.