Rob Roy 4 Auchinleck 3: Rabs roar back to win thriller

Rob Roy won a remarkable Super League opener against Auchinleck
Rob Roy won a remarkable Super League opener against Auchinleck

The Super League campaign started with a bang as Rob Roy staged a magnificent comeback to take all three points against Auchinleck.

It was an enthralling game after kick-off was delayed by 15 minutes when the referee ruled there was a colour clash in the chosen strips and Rob Roy had to get a change set in from Kirkintilloch.

Although Rob Roy started well through efforts from Gavin Mackie and Kevin Watt, it was Talbot who looked the more dangerous especially with their physical advantage.

It was no surprise therefore when Auchinleck took the lead after 17 minutes. Graham Wilson was sent clear and he cleverly dragged the ball past the diving Michael McKinven to slot in to the empty net.

However Wilson’s joy was soon curtailed, as he was booked a minute later for a late tackle on Danny Boyle.

From a Mackie free-kick Boyle headed wide as the Roy tried to get back in to the game but Talbot were dangerous on the break. Mark Shankland shot wide when through on goal and Gary McCulloch made a great clearance from the same player.

However Auchinleck did increase their lead in the 24th minute when Wilson neatly beat his defender at the edge of the box to shoot past McKinven.

Shaun Fraser shot wide after a miskick from Neil McPherson but the Roy were finding it difficult to break down the Talbot defence.

However in the 43rd minute the visitors were reduced to 10 men when Wilson picked up his second yellow for a late high challenge on Boyle.

The second half had barely started when Talbot made it 3-0, a cross from the left was flicked in to the net by Jamie Glasgow.

But Rob Roy changed to a back three and in the 55th minute pulled a goal back when Lee Gallacher beat his man to cross for Mackie who bulleted his header home.

Gary McMenamin and Watt went close before the visitors were reduced to nine men when William Lyle received his marching orders after bringing down Gary Carroll.

Rob Roy seized the initiative with their increased numerical advantage and pulled another goal back in the 70th minute when Gallacher netted with a fierce shot low to Andrew Leishman’s left.

Joe Slattery replaced Mackie and made an immediate impact with his close control that the Talbot defenders found difficult to stop.

Rob Roy then squandered a glorious chance to equalise when they were awarded a penalty only to see Watt’s saved by Leishman.

But the momentum was now with Rob Roy and their pressure was rewarded in the 80th minute when Boyle headed home from a Gallacher corner, much to the delight of the former Talbot defender.

Substitute Stefan Law was unlucky when his chip hit the top of the net as Auchinleck desperately tried to hang on.

As time was running out a great move down the left between Law and Carroll resulted in an 89th minute corner.

And when Slattery crossed over, Gallacher found space 10 yards out and smacked a left foot volley high past Leishman to give the Roy the lead much to the delight of the home support.

After a poor first half performance it was an incredible comeback from Rob Roy.