Blantyre Victoria 0 Kilsyth Rangers 1
Stagecoach West of Scotland League
Central District First Division
NOT a vintage performance here, but it was enough to secure the three points which puts Rangers back on top of the table with just one game remaining.
Elsewhere their only rivals now for the title, Thorniewood, were dropping a couple of points at home to Johnstone Burgh and it is now entirely in their own hands with a win against Greenock next Saturday making certain that they go up as champions.
Blantyre had the advantage of the strong breeze for the first half and indeed in the early part of the game they had Rangers on the back foot; they were not getting many real scoring opportunities though when they did manage to get a shot in Dukes dealt easily enough with them. By the half hour mark Rangers were beginning to get their act together and Kelly had a great chance but somehow msanaged tosend the ball wide. Five minutes later though, and a freekick taken from a position out near the left touchline found Paul DOYLE whose well-placed header beat Murray to give Rangers the lead.
Now with wind advantage Rangers started to apply some pressure on the home side early in the second half and chances to increase their lead were coming, and being squandered with regularity. Kelly had another good chance, then Flannery hit the side netting after Murray had produced yet another good save. Joe Barclay had the best chance so far, but somehow managed cto send the ball wide from all of four yards.
Blantyre were hardly in it but were having occasional forays upfield and when Dukes needed some lengthy attention after going down in the box there was a feeling of nervousness amongst the Rangers fans. he recovered and carried on though and with word coming through near the end that Thorniewood were being held to a draw in their match it only increases as the final whistle drew near. there was no late equaliser coming from Blantyre though, as there had been in the home match just a couple of weeks back, and now the advantage is back with Rangers going into the finsal game.
KILSYTH RANGERS: Duke, Waters, Carr, Doyle, Hogg, McLellan, McAteer, McPeake, Barclay, Flannery, Kelly. Subs: Dolan, Nimmo, Hamilton.
BLANTYRE VICTORIA: Murray, McFarlane, McKee, Bohan, Cassidy, Wyatt, Fletcher, Boyle, Mallon, Lafferty, Miller. Subs: Sinclair, Crawford, Brown.
Rangers’ final league match is at home to Greenock this Saturday, kick-off 2pm
In the event that Rangers win the section they will qualify for this year’s Evening Times Trophy and will meet Premier Division winners, Irvine Meadow, in a re-run of the fourth-round Scottish Cup tie. The game would be at Duncansfield on a date yet to be decided.