Jags en­dure day to for­get

Ref adds in­sult to in­jury af­ter book­ing crocked star

East Kilbride News - - BASKETBALL - Paul Thom­son

East Kil­bride This­tle boss Alan Pa­ter­son slammed ref­eree Ross Bir­rell for book­ing in­jured player David McKean as he was stretchered off dur­ing their de­feat to Ross­vale.

Satur­day’s game, which the Jags lost 4-0, was marred by a hor­ror in­jury to the mid­fielder, in which he broke his kneecap in a 50-50 chal­lenge.

With the sides locked at 0-0, pro­ceed­ings were de­layed for al­most half an hour as McKean re­ceived treat­ment from the Ross­vale physio and paramedics.

How­ever, Pa­ter­son took ex­cep­tion to Bir­rell hang­ing around the player for that time and then book­ing him as he was stretchered off the field to an await­ing am­bu­lance.

The Jags boss was fu­ri­ous with the of­fi­cial and ac­cused him of show­ing a lack of re­spect to his player.

Pa­ter­son said: “It was an ab­so­lutely dev­as­tat­ing in­jury, a real sick­ener to be hon­est.

“As soon as it hap­pened we knew it was a re­ally bad one.

“It wasn’t a bad tackle or any­thing, it was just two boys go­ing into a chal­lenge fully com­mit­ted in the mid­dle of the park and David has come off worse.

“The guys at Ross­vale and the paramedics were great with him.

“The only per­son who didn’t show him any re­spect was the ref­eree, who stood over him the whole time with the card in his hand wait­ing to book him for the tackle.

“I said to him I thought it was shock­ing what he was do­ing.

“I told him there’s an am­bu­lance wait­ing to take him away and all you are wor­ry­ing about is book­ing him.

“At the time I thought he’d bro­ken his leg and the ref told me to stop be­ing a drama queen.

“Next he said he hadn’t bro­ken any­thing and I was like: ‘Oh, so you are a doc­tor now as well?’

“The paramedics had to hook him up to oxy­gen and I think maybe af­ter that he re­alised it was a bad one.

“But it lit­er­ally added in­sult to in­jury. Even the Ross­vale guys didn’t want him booked.

“We are los­ing one of our best play­ers for over a year now, so it’s a real blow.”

Goals from An­ton McDowall, Liam Crich­ton, Greg Fernie as well as exEKFC and EKYM striker Gary Gif­fen helped Ross­vale cruise to their eighth win on the bounce in Cen­tral District First Di­vi­sion.

McKean’s in­jury came just 10 min­utes into the game and af­ter fall­ing to their fourth league de­feat on the spin Pa­ter­son added: “I don’t know if it af­fected the re­sult or not. David is very well-liked in the dress­ing room and his brother Scott was play­ing as well, so I’m sure it was on a lot of the boys’ minds.

“But we can have no ex­cuses about the re­sult be­cause Ross­vale were too strong for us. They are the most or­gan­ised and well-balanced I’ve seen and Gary Grif­fin was re­ally im­pres­sive for them.

“But we are giv­ing away re­ally cheap goals, mak­ing mis­takes all over the park and be­ing pun­ished for it.”

On Satur­day, This­tle are due to host Thorniewood – who they beat 7-1 in a Ju­nior Cup re­play last month – and Pa­ter­son knows they must im­prove if they are to beat the league’s bot­tom side.

He said: “Our next three games are all against teams at the bot­tom of the table, so we need to start pick­ing up points.

“The last few games we’ve lost a bit of con­fi­dence and we need to get back to how we were play­ing at the start of the sea­son.”

Kick-off at the Show­park is 2pm.


Painful David McKean is treated for his in­jury as ref­eree Bir­rel looks on

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