The Sunday Post (Dundee)
RAITH ROVERS 2 Barr (71) Stewart (79) DUNFERMLINE ATHLETIC 0
RAITH ROVERS maintained both their 100% league record this season and their position at the head of the Championship table with a convincing victory over near neighbours Dunfermline.
The pulsating Fife derby was the first league meeting between the sides for almost three and a half years.
“I’m delighted with the result, it was a difficult game” said Rovers manager Gary Locke afterward. “It started off like a typical derby but once the game slowed down we passed the ball around well.
“We were the better side after half time and scored two great goals.”
Tempers flared midway through the first half following a dangerous lunge by Raith’s Ross Matthews on Pars’ Joe Cardle.
As Cardle lay prostrate on the pitch, team mate Kallum Higginbotham moved towards Matthews and within seconds no fewer than 20 players were involved before referee Alan Muir calmed matters down, showing yellow cards to both Matthews and Higginbotham in the aftermath.
Both sides came close to opening the scoring before the break with Higginbotham and Raith’s Lewis Vaughan being denied by excellent saves from Aaron Lennox and David Hutton.
But if the first half had been evenly contested the home side assumed command and demonstrated why they are the current league leaders with a dominant post-interval performance, taking the lead when Bobby Barr ran on to Matthews’ pass in the 71st minutes before sending a low shot past Hutton.
Sub Mark Stewart sealed victory with a stunning 20 yarder 10 minutes from time.
“We had plenty of chances, probably more than Raith did,” said Pars boss Allan Johnston. “But in a game like that the first goal is always going to be important.”