Linlithgow Rose title bid derailed

240312  Linlithgow rose v bonnyrigg rose.
240312 Linlithgow rose v bonnyrigg rose.

CONDITIONS overhead and underfoot were perfect at Prestonfield for this East Super League match.

With Shirra and McArthur unavailable, Walker and Smith returned to the starting 11 and Hay replaced Allison in goal.

Bonnyrigg started confidently and opened the scoring after only two minutes.

Grady beat McKenzie wide out on the left and his cross was perfect for Archibald to head easily past Hay. The lead was shortlived though as, only a few minutes later, Tyrell’s inswinging corner from the left found Walker and he headed home.

Both teams competed well and created opportunities to go in front. Just before the half hour mark, a flowing move by Bonnyrigg saw Grady feed in a cross from the right which McCallum put just over the crossbar.

Ten minutes from half-time, Roddy MacLennan surged forward, and following a neat exchange with Herd, his shot was blocked by Weir.

The rebound fell to Coyne who was unlucky to see his strike go over the bar.

Within five minutes of the restart, Linlithgow found themselves a goal behind. An error by Tyrell allowed Steele to race through on goal. He slipped the ball to Grady who slammed the ball past Hay.

Bonnyrigg nearly added to their goals in the 70th minute when a long range effort by McKenna was touched over the bar by Hay.

With 15 minutes to go, there was controversy when keeper Weir handled the ball outside the box as Coyne looked to be in on goal.

The referee only saw fit to issue a yellow card to the keeper, much to the annoyance of the Linlithgow players and supporters.

The home team was unable to capitalise with Nelson’s free-kick which hit the wall. A few minutes later, Herd shot across goal from the left but his attempt went wide.

Five minutes from time, Linlithgow scored a deserved equaliser.

Following a good passing move involving Manson, Strickland, Nelson and Roddy MacLennan, Nelson found Herd in the box who volleyed the ball back across the goal where it was met by Roddy who slotted home.

Linlithgow pressed forward in search of a winner and came close when Manson’s pass found Coyne.

In the dying minutes, there were strong shouts from the home team for a penalty, but instead, Strickland received a yellow card for going down too easily in the box, and moments later, manager Mark Bradley was sent to the stand as emotions ran high.

Rose man of the match: Walker

Rose: Hay, Brown (Strickland 68), Tyrell, Mackenzie, Walker, Ruari MacLennan, Smith (Manson 65), Nelson, Herd, Coyne, Roddy MacLennan. Subs (unused): Fleming, Stephen Connelly, Sean Connelly, Benton, Allison.