McBookie Premiership



CUMNOCK welcomed history-makers Rossvale to Townhead Park for their first match in the top division. The Bishopbriggs club have had a meteoric rise through the Junior Divisions.

The hosts had Ally Semple, player/boss Paul Burns and striker Jamie Conn back after being rested in midweek. Recent signing Rhuaridh McIntyre kept his place and Ayr United loanee Nathan Baird was given a debut.

The game kicked off in strange circumstances for a Premiership match as no assistant referees were present. Both teams found the blistering heat a problem in the first half. Cumnock still tried to play their quick passing game and a few times nice intricate build up play led to chances for Alistair Miller and Conn. In 24 minutes Cumnock took the lead. In a congested midfield, the impressive Craig McLeish played a one -two with Graeme Ramage and another with Christopher Campbell and then lifted a pass over the Rossvale defence into the path of Burns who slid it past James Donnelly.

This shook Rossvale into life and on the half hour, Joe Slattery drilled home a pull back below Semple. Slattery was denied by a tremendous save from Semple at full stretch. This sparked Cumnock back to life and after a quick counter-attack Donnelly made a great save from Campbell. In 51 minutes Cumnock regained the lead as McLeish curled a great effort low into the corner from 20 yards. Four minutes later came the turning point. After a long ball caused problems for the Rossvale defence, outrushing keeper Donnelly headed clear straight to Ramage who volleyed back towards goal only for the keeper to produce a stunning save. However he was a few yards outside his box and he was red-carded for deliberate handball outside the box. Cumnock found the killer goal when after a fine pass from Baird, Jamie Conn turned his marker in the box and blasted home. At the death man-of the-match McLeish was red-carded for dissent.

CUMNOCK: Semple, Baird, Murdoch, McIntyre, Ferry, Burns, Ramage, McLeish, Campbell, Miller and Conn

Subs : Banks, Hunter, Kemoe, Crawford and McMurdo.