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Friday, December 26th 2008

5:00 PM

Glenafton Athletic vs. Pollok : Stagecoach Super League Premier Division

GLENAFTON ATHLETIC 1 POLLOK 2

Scorer: Feroz

Top goalscorer Craig Feroz returned to the Glens starting line up after having been sidelined through an injury sustained in the away league match at Petershill.  The bullish striker didn't take long to make his mark and opened the scoring after 3 minutes.  Gordon Moffat's long ball to the edge of the Pollok box sclaffed off the top of Chris Cruickshanks' head and Jamie Doyle picked up the loose ball deep on the right flank and before Cruickshank coud redeem the situation he fired the ball across the face of the goalmouth where Feroz nipped in between the stranded Derek Wingate and the sluggish Stevie Aitchinson to guide the ball beyond the rooted Kris Robertson.

Two minutes later the referee brandished the first of 9 yellow cards. Glens' Mark Quinn was first for a foul on Calum Hardie followed by Pollok's Stevie Miller, relieved  to see only a yellow card, after he raised both his hands to the Glens player in protest and had to be manfully restrained by the official.

The home side were creating the bulk of the chances from open play but without really testing Robertson. Dougie Ramsay and Doyle combined to cut open the Pollok back three, but Davie McKeown's back-tracking prevented Chris Zok collecting the through ball. Paul McMullan twisted and turned to leave his marker for dead but his cross from the dead ball line was met by both Feroz and Chris Zok and the ball flashed beyond Robertson's far post. Pollok's best chances of the half came from set pieces but here too Chris Fahey's goals were rarely threatened. One set-piece that didn't materialise was the penalty that Robert Downs tried to deceive (simulation it's called now) the referee into giving as he did one of his trade-mark tumbles in the box, earning himself a well deserved yellow card.  Half-time Glens 1 Pollok 0

The visitors were first to threaten after the break when David Turnbull blasted wide of target. With less than 5 minutes of the half gone Andy Gow became the ref's sixth yellow card of the match after he brought a fine-passing Pollok move to a halt with a rash challenge on Hardie.  Minutes later Doyle destroyed the Lok's back three with a glorious pass to release Feroz in acres of space, but his choice to shoot early failed to pay off and Roberston saved comfortably. The keeper dealt less convincingly with a low hard shot from McMullan, but had time to gather the spilled shot. Feroz then chased a lost cause and skinned Cruickshank on the bye-line to cross for Doyle at the back-post, but McKeown won the aerial contest.

Pollok should have drawn level when keeper Fahey fluffed an Andy Essler cross but Turnbull couldn't direct the loose ball goalward from a few yards out. The Glens responded through McMullan who ghosted down the left and although his cross was missed at the back post by Feroz and Cruickshank, Doyle was there to cut the ball back to Willie Howie on the edge of the box whose shot was blocked by the diving Cruickshank,  but home claims for a hand-ball were waved away. The loose ball broke to Moffat and after a tangle with Downs and the award of a free-kick to the Glens the Lok striker grabbed the ball with one hand and pushed bystander Ramsay in the face with the other, but somehow he ducked a second yellow card.

The Glens pushed for the second killer goal and in 61 minutes Feroz waltzed through a host of Pollok defenders aligned on the outskirts of the box only to be stopped by Cruickshank and for the ball to break for McMullan who burst through the black-and-white line and into the box at speed only to be tripped by Aitchison from behind for what seemed a certain penalty. No, a free-kick on the edge of the box and a yellow card for Aitchison, Santa had arrived late for the Glasgow side.

Predictably Pollok grabbed this life-line with both hands (metaphorically) and drew level three minutes later in controversial circumstances. Bryan Dingwall looked suspiciously offside when he gathered the ball lofted high into the box by Miller but as the Glens appealing arms went down he dribbled through a clutch of defenders and laid the ball back to Turnbull who lashed the ball from 15 yards out into Fahey's top left hand corner with some style.

Minutes later the Glens had a glorious chance to regain the lead. Howie picked out Zok wide on the left and his cross into the box was mishit by Wingate allowing Doyle to set up Feroz, but his shot from a few yards out lacked the direction or power to beat Robertson.

Both teams went in search of the winner but remained level at the ninety-minute mark. However, with 3 minutes of added time played, Pollok won a corner-kick on the right which was headed to the edge of the box by Gow only for Wingate to return it to the depths of the six yard box where Dingwall was still lurking to add a finishing header to beat Fahey on his line. Full time Glens 1 Pollok 2

Glenafton Athetic: Fahey; Moffat, Gow, McGregor, Quinn; Doyle, Howie, Ramsay, McMullan (Cameron); Feroz, Zok (Eeles)

Pollok : Robertson; Aithchison, Wingate, Cruickshank; Hardie, Miller, McLay (Carruth), McGeown (MacKay); Turnbull, Dingwall, Downs

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