Rob Roy......................... 3
Forth Wanderers................. 2
WITH the Largs pitch failing an early-morning referee’s inspection, Rob Roy and Forth Wanderers arranged a friendly at the Bathgate Sports Centre Astroturf.
The game’s first real effort on goal came in the eighth minute after Rabs’ Doyle freed Coakley on the right. His shot was on target, but McKinlay managed to clear the ball off the line.
The defender injured himself in the process and was later withdrawn.
Both sides had chances to take the lead with McBride firing over for Rabs and Murphy heading a Crawford free-kick over the bar for the Lanarkshire side.
Wanderers took the lead in the 18th minute after keeper Robertson managed to block a Kris Jarvie shot. The striker was quick to react and headed the rebound into the vacant net.
Rob Roy responded immediately and within two minutes were back on level terms when Michael Fulton sent Adam Coakley through on goal before coolly finishing.
Rabs, playing a neat passing game, took the lead in the 27th minute when Gormley broke through the Forth defence to unselfishly square the ball to Coakley for a simple tap-in.
The Central League side were still very much in the game and after Murphy drove narrowly past the post they levelled the game when Tony Traynor ran into the Rabs box from the left before sending his shot past Robertson.
Four minutes after the interval Rabs again snatched the lead when, from a Gormley lay-off, Coakley completed his hat-trick by lashing the ball high past keeper Clarke.
Forth were still dangerous on the break with Traynor and Murphy sending decent efforts just over the bar.
On the hour mark Rabs gaffer Jimmy Lindsay sent on all five listed substitutes and within minutes of coming on Chris Mackie’s physical presence was causing problems to the Forth defence, as the Adamslie park side began to dominate.
MacKay clattered the upright when through on goal before Fulton forced Clarke into a fine diving save. Minutes later the keeper was in action again – this time managing to keep out a MacKay snapshot.
In the final minutes in what was an entertaining and competitive friendly, Forth had two late chances to grab the equaliser, with Gemmell heading a Murphy corner over the bar and – in the 88th minute – Harty hitting the inside of the post, with the ball running along the goal-line before being scrambled clear.
Rob Roy: Robertson, McLachlan, McBride, Smith, A Lindsay, Donnelly (Lindsay 60), Doyle (MacKay 60), Fulton, Gormley (Mackie 60), Coakley (Cairney 60), Easton (McAleenan 60),