Cup draw finally brings Linlithgow home comfort

Blair Batchelor challenges a Selkirk defender during Linlithgow's cup win.
Blair Batchelor challenges a Selkirk defender during Linlithgow's cup win.

Linlithgow Rose have landed a home tie against League Two side Stirling Albion in the second round of the Scottish Cup.

Rose will face the Forthbank side, under newly appointed boss Martyn Corrigan, at Prestonfield on Saturday, October 22.

A home draw is something of a novelty for Davie McGlynn's side who have been handed a succession of lengthy Scottish Cup journeys in recent times.

Last season the East Region Superleague side's glory run to the last 16 took them to Gala, Inverness, Wick and finally Dingwall to face Ross County. The only home tie they got was against Forfar which they drew, necessitating another trip for a replay.

This season Rose have already been down to Threave and Selkirk where they won 3-0 on Saturday to set up their date with Stirling.

Boss McGlynn rang the changes at Selkirk after some disappointing results.

Usually deployed in defence, Robbie McNab was given a starting berth on the right wing and he signalled his intent after four minutes when he flashed a dangerous ball across goal but there were no takers.

Gary Thom then came close to the opener with a long range effort which drifted just wide of home goalkeeper Mark Wilson's left-hand post, before Blair Batchelor sent a dipping volley just over the bar.

McGlynn also chose to drop keeper Richard Barnard to the bench with Darren Hill brought in to make his competitive debut and he showed what he could do as he made a fine save to deny Dale Baxter who went though on goal before denying Phil Addison at his near post.

The swirling wind wasn't making it easy for either side - Linlithgow in particular failing to get their passing game going, but they were in front just a minute into the second half.

Blair Batchelor was shaping to shoot when he was clattered from behind by home defender Mark Samson and referee Calum Scott pointed straight to the spot before flashing a red card.

Tommy Coyne, ever reliable from 12 yards, coolly converted to put the visitors ahead.

And the striker didn't have to wait too long for his second, producing a fine finish to beat Mark Wilson at his front post from Graham Weir's corner.

McNab then drove a shot just wide of the far post as Linlithgow looked eager to put the tie out of sight with the home side on the ropes.

Coyne thought he had secured his hat-trick on 61 minutes after a fine move. The frontman played a one-two with Weir before getting a header on the former Hearts star's cross, only for Wilson to deny him with a fine stop.

That chance could be put down to goalkeeping brilliance, but Coyne only had himself to blame when he squandered an opportunity from three yards out after Kelbie's effort from the edge of the box could only be parried out.

Selkirk were still proving to be a threat themselves, however, despite being a man down. James Harley's headed looked goalbound only for Joe Hamill to clear off the line.

However Kevin Kelbie, scorer of the memorable winner in extra-time at Forfar last season, made sure of Rose's passage when he capitalised on a defensive error and swept home.