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Saturday, January 21st 2006

12:00 AM

Lugar Boswell Thistle 2 Annbank United 3

Lugar’s chances of promotion weren’t sunk as much as they were blown clean out of the water with a mixture of a 3 gun salvo and sabotage. The 3 gun salvo came by the way of a trio of strikes by Annbank in the last 20 minutes and the sabotage was engineered by the worst refereeing decision I have witnessed in many a season.

 

Lugar were on top from the outset and had a few chances early on, including a Patrick Walker header that went just over.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Walker gets set for the cross.

 

With 12 minutes played Ricky Hanvey blasted in the opener with a brilliant strike from outside the box following a poor clearance from a Lugar corner. Lugar had the ball in the net again as Patrick Walker send Andy Boyle in on goal but instead of taking the chance for himself he played a one – two with Walker before slamming home the return ball, unfortunately for Thistle, Walker was now in an offside position and the goal was disallowed.

Boyle hits the net but Walker was offside.

 

Lugar continued to press and should have scored a second when Walker was brought down at the edge of the box. Referee Steven Martin pointed to the spot and Paul Cameron decided to put last week’s penalty miss behind him and lined up to take the kick. This proved to be a wrong decision as for the second week in a row the visiting keeper pulled of a good save, but unlike last week this time the ball was turned round for a corner.

 

Cameron’s spot kick.

 

 

 

Best turns it round to safety.

 

Annbank were by far second best and barely posed any threat to the home defence, meanwhile the visitor’s rearguard were coping well with Lugar’s attacks.

 

 

Best takes this cross easily.

 

Boyle is outjumped.

 

The second half was delayed for 15 minutes when the referee could not continue due to a pulled muscle. After a request to the watching public, the well known figure of Dougie Smith came forward to take on the whistle.

The second half had only just got underway when Annbank were caught cold and Stuart McPherson popped up to fire Lugar into a two goal lead.

 

McPherson gets congratulated for his goal.

 

The Boswell piled forward looking for the third goal that would put the game beyond Annbank, but both Walker and Hanvey missed golden opportunities to settle the game. Annbank however set about getting back into the game and introduced two subs in quick succession to freshen up their side. They did eventually get their reward for their change as Stuart Leavy was adjudged to have brought down an Annbank forward to give away a penalty which Whalen gratefully accepted; he stuck the spot kick comfortably out of Leavy’s reach. The Bankies were inspired by this and pressed for the equaliser, which came about thanks to the aforementioned sabotage. A passback was hastily cleared by Leavy due to the close attentions of an inrushing Mick McCann, the clearance was headed back in by an Annbank midfielder straight to Billy Findlay who was clearly 5 yards offside. The assistant referee looked across and saw “someone” on the far side playing Findlay on and he allowed play to continue. Findlay was amazed that there was no whistle but he accepted the chance and slammed the ball home for the equaliser. The “someone” playing Findlay on turned out to be an Annbank sub standing on the touchline some 25yards out of his technical area. How he could be mistaken for a Lugar defender beggars belief, but it certainly raises the question of why was he allowed to be there anyway. If he was warming up, why wasn’t he behind the goal line? If he wasn’t warming up what was he doing out of the Dug-out?

Lugar were rocked by this decision and before they could regain their composure McCann rubbed salt into the wounds when he scored the winner for the visitors with only a couple of minutes left to play.

Lugar are once again at home on Saturday when they face Troon, unfortunately it now looks more like we will be playing to avoid relegation rather than getting into the top division, all thanks to a mistake! If that is what it really was!

Full Time Score Lugar Boswell Thistle 2 Annbank United 3

Lugar: Leavy; Doolan; Eaglesham; Pettigrew; McCluskie; McMahon; Boyle; Hanvey; McPherson; Walker; Cameron.

Used sub- Duffy; Unused subs Muir, Scott.

Annbank: Best; Boyd; Richardson; Flannigan; Holland; McVey; Porte; White; McCann; Connelly; Whalen.

Used subs – Main; Findlay; Kemp.

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