Linlithgow pay for slow start as Livingston take derby spoils

Linlithgow's Mark Green weaving his way through the Livingston defence (pic by Graham Black)
Linlithgow's Mark Green weaving his way through the Livingston defence (pic by Graham Black)

Linlithgow were edged out 
27-20 by Livingston in a BT East Division 1 derby cracker at Mains Park on Saturday.

A huge crowd showed up early but in contrast the Linlithgow players took a full 15 minutes to turn up, by which time Livingston were 12-0 up with two tries.

During that period the only time the home side were out their own half was at the kick off, but they gradually came back into the game and got a try back with good work from Rab Cairns, converted by Jack Frame.

Linlithgow were on top at this point and were pressing the Livingston try line. It wasn’t long until the referee had to produce a yellow as Livingston kept on infringing to stop the Linlithgow attack, but the only reward for the home side was a Frame penalty.

However Linlithgow made the extra man count as great play by Ross Martin allowed Cairns to go over for his second try.

The conversion was missed in the strong wind and as half-time approached Livingston stole a try, their number 9 going in unopposed on the blind side from a five-metre scrum, to lead 17-15 at the break.

The home side started the second half with intent. Livingston knocked on from the kick off, and several phases later Mark Caddle went over for the Reds to regain the lead, but Frame missed the conversion.

However Livingston came back immediately with a converted try to get their noses back in front at 24-20.

With the home side struggling to win the scrums, the game flowed from end to end, with a score possible for either team.

During this period, the Reds backs looked dangerous with ball in hand, in particular full back Rab Cairns and winger Gregor Stewart.

But as the game drew to a close, Livingston added another penalty and there was no time for the home side to come back.

This Saturday Linlithgow are away to Broughton.