An­other tale of an over­due cup win ends in sun­shine on Beith

The Herald - Herald Sport - - ETHX ENERGY SCOTTISH JUNIOR CUP FINAL -

for­mer Dum­bar­ton goal­keeper, still pre­ferred to do things the old-fash­ioned way. “I had been think­ing of penal­ties all last night,” he re­vealed. “When we were told there would be no ex­tra time, I thought it had a right good chance of go­ing to penal­ties. I had a feel­ing I would save a cou­ple so I’m happy that I man­aged to do it. I had a wee sheet of paper with in­for­ma­tion on it and it’s nice to have that knowl­edge but I de­cided to go with that ad­vice on only one of the penal­ties and it was David Win­ters’ which I saved. The rest was in­stinct.”

For a while it be­gan to look as if Rob­bie Win­ters was go­ing to be the story of the day. The well-trav­elled striker, now 41 years old, had started on the bench but emerged af­ter 71 min­utes with Pol­lok a goal be­hind. Within 30 sec­onds he had equalised with his first touch af­ter brother David’s shot had pranged against the post. Rob­bie later suc­ceeded where David had failed by also scor­ing in the shoot-out but it would prove only a tem­po­rary stay of ex­e­cu­tion with Burke step­ping up next to send the tro­phy to Beith.

Pol­lok, who be­gan as favourites, will surely come to re­gret not cap­i­tal­is­ing on their first-half dom­i­nance when they cre­ated a hand­ful of chances but failed to take any of them. Carlo Monti, once of Mor­ton and Dundee, was at the heart of the first two, cross­ing for Kieran McAleenan whose header drifted nar­rowly wide while a corner that landed on Chris Walker’s head also ended sim­i­larly off tar­get. The best Pol­lok chance of the first half, how­ever, fell to David Win­ters. A long ball for­ward found the ex-Dundee United and Liv­ingston for­ward rac­ing free of the Beith de­fence but he couldn’t get the ball prop­erly in his stride and John Sheri­dan re­cov­ered to nick it off his toe.

Beith, in con­trast, were strug­gling to im­pose them­selves on the con­test at this point. It took un­til the 30th minute be­fore they had fash­ioned a chance of note and even then Paul Frize’s shot lacked the sufficient venom to trou­ble Jor­dan Long­muir in goal. Em­bold­ened by Pol­lock’s profli­gacy they tried again be­fore the break, Kenny McLean’s vol­ley re­quir­ing Long­muir to thrust up a palm to push it over.

Beith con­tin­ued to knock at the door and, as Pol­lok fal­tered, it even­tu­ally opened for them. It was a ter­rific in­di­vid­ual goal from Dar­ren Christie who wrig­gled away from Walker be­fore fizzing a shot across the goal­keeper and into the far corner of the net.

“It was just good to score in front of all my mates in that far corner,” said Christie. “There was a full bus of them there and my mum with my wee girl as well so it was great to score on that side.”

With an hour played Beith were in the as­cen­dancy and only a ter­rific stop from Long­muir de­nied An­drew Reid a few min­utes later. Rob­bie Win­ters’ sub­se­quent in­ter­ven­tion took it to penal­ties where the team from Ayr­shire emerged tri­umphant. Call it Sun­shine on Beith.

Pic­tures: SNS

DAY IN THE SUN: Beith cel­e­brate win­ning 4-3 on penal­ties af­ter a 1-1 draw at Rugby park to seal the first Scottish Junior Cup win in the club’s his­tory.

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