Gretna keen to kick on af­ter win over Wel­fare

Dumfries & Galloway Standard - - READER TRAVEL -

Davie Irons in­sists his Gretna 2008 side are thirst­ing for another win when they face Vale of Lei­then to­mor­row.

The Black and Whites co-man­ager savoured their 4-1 tri­umph over White­hill Wel­fare to end a run of poor re­sults.

And Irons wants another vic­tory be­fore they tackle Spar­tans in the re-ar­ranged East of Scot­land Cup third round tie next Tues­day night.

He said: “We beat Vale of Lei­then 3-0 at our place the last time which was much ear­lier in the sea­son.

“So af­ter win­ning com­fort­ably against White­hill Wel­fare last Satur­day, it would be great to keep that up.

“That win got us back on track af­ter a dis­ap­point­ing cou­ple of months in De­cem­ber and Jan­uary which has cost us a top four place.

“We were go­ing well for it and had a wee chance un­til we had a bad De­cem­ber and Jan­uary.

“We had a lot of post­pone­ments as well and had to can­cel train­ing a few times with the pitch ei­ther frozen, or flooded.

“So all that didn’t help ei­ther with the fit­ness lev­els and match sharp­ness. “And, re­ally, those two months killed off our top four hopes. “That’s why it was good to get back on track with the 4-1 win over White­hill last week­end.

“We could have won by more, but af­ter such a run with­out a win I will take any win, no mat­ter the score.”

Irons added: “Another win would be the ideal prepa­ra­tion for the cup game with Spar­tans.

“It is due to be played at Ray­dale on Tues­day with a 7.45pm kick off.”

Mean­while, Dal­beat­tie Star are due to have a free week­end as it is the South­ern Coun­ties Chal­lenge Cup and they are a round ahead of their ri­vals.

The break seems to have come at the right time, man­ager Dar­renKerr hope­ful of hav­ing most of the squad fit and ready for the next game against White­hill Wel­fare on Fe­bru­ary 17.

And there could be a fur­ther boost with Lewis Sloan pos­si­bly set to re­join the squad, hav­ing been out with in­jury since the sum­mer.

Kerr said: “He’s hope­fully start­ing light train­ing which is a pos­i­tive. It’ll be like a new sign­ing if we get him back this sea­son but if not he’ll be back for next sea­son.

“Greig Thor­burn should be back and Grant Parker has been out for three or four weeks so get­ting him back will help with num­bers. Jamie McHar­rie, Dean Brother­ston and Ally McColm all missed Satur­day but they should hope­fully be back too.

“The free week gave the boys the chance to recharge. It’s the same boys that have been play­ing all sea­son and the heavy pitches are tak­ing their toll.

“It’s a big three weeks for us be­cause af­ter the break we have two home games against teams round about us and we’re re­ally look­ing to win to push back up the league.” An­nan boss Peter Mur­phy re­vealed how Evan Horne played through the agony of a bro­ken wrist in last week­end’s 1-1 draw with Cow­den­beath.

The on-loan St Mir­ren player bat­tled through the pain bar­rier and fin­ished the match, which was his home de­but, be­fore head­ing to hos­pi­tal.

Mur­phy said:“Evan broke his wrist dur­ing the game, but he says he didn’t feel too bad and played on.

“He felt it a bit sore af­ter­wards so he went to hos­pi­tal and that’s when the x-rays showed it was a bro­ken wrist.

“It is pos­si­bly a hair­line frac­ture and be­cause it is not a full break he doesn’t have a plas­ter cast on it.

“So there is a chance he might be able to play at El­gin. We’ll have to wait and see nearer the time.

“He has a sup­port on the wrist with a cou­ple of rigid wires to en­sure the wrist doesn’t bend. As I say, we’ll see on Satur­day if he can play.”

Mean­time, Mur­phy told how the team will have a 6.15am start from An­nan as they be­gin the long trek north to face El­gin City.

He said:“It is go­ing to be a long day that’s for sure.

“And we will be up early in the morn­ing for this one. We were up there ear­lier in the sea­son and it was just af­ter another long haul to Peter­head.

“We are go­ing to stop off for lunch on the way and to stretch the legs.

“Some­times we get lucky with the Carlisle coach firm we use be­cause they have a new coach for Carlisle United, so thank­fully they are at home and we of­ten get that one for our games. Played on with what turned out to be a bro­ken wrist

“Carlisle are at home to Colch­ester in League Two, so here’s hop­ing we get the bet­ter bus with all the fancy seats, videos and stuff. The play­ers of­ten have fa­cil­i­ties to use their com­puter games which helps.”

Mur­phy added:“We have the two an­kle in­juries to Ryan Sin­na­mon and Owen Moxon while Rabin Omar and Liam Hen­der­son are both sus­pended.

“That means another player reshuf­fle, but we’ll get through it.”

Evan Horne

Davie Irons Win got us back on track

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