Brora Rangers 1 – 0 Pollok

For the second season in a row Pollok made it to the third round of the Scottish Cup and their reward once again was a tough away trip. Last season it was a trip to the then Championship leaders Ayr United. This season took them to Dudgeon Park to play Highland League promotion chasing Brora Rangers. Manager, Stewart Maxwell, made two changes from the side which beat Linlithgow Rose in the South Challenge Cup, with top scorer Adam Forde making a welcome from injury and Luke Main returning from a lengthy suspension in place of Grant Anderson and Hugh Kerr.

Pollok started brightly and Forde fired just wide with a low shot from outside the box. His next attempt came even closer to breaking the deadlock. He controlled a Darren Christie cross brilliantly and then hit a low shot on the turn which came back off the post, before Main fired the rebound wide from close range.

At the other end Jordan Longmuir was forced to tip a long-range effort round the post, and from the resultant corner Brora got a shot away. Longmuir parried but it needed clearing off the line to keep the game scoreless. From their next corner Brora headed wide. A long ball by Longmuir found Forde who flicked it inside for Christie. The ball didn’t quite sit up for him and he sliced his effort wide from the edge of the box.

Main had an attempt blocked from an Andy Gallacher cross and then put the rebound wide as Pollok looked the more likely to score. However it was to be the home side who took the lead in the thirty-fourth minute with an excellent goal. A free-flowing move saw the ball moved from the left to the right before Ewan’s cross was expertly swept home by Jordan MacRae into the bottom corner.

There had not been much between the sides and the best bit of quality shown in the first half had given Brora a halftime lead. The second half started with Brora in the ascendancy. A save by Longmuir fell at the feet of a Brora striker but Calum Gow made a last gasp block to prevent a second goal.

Brora’s next effort was also deflected away for a corner. Brora had the ball in the net again but the referee ruled the ball had been kicked out of Longmuir’s hands. At the other end a Christie cross was met by substitute Kerr. His header was destined for the bottom corner until Ross flung himself to his right to paw it away. It was to be the closest Pollok would come to finding an equaliser. Longmuir would make one more diving save as the game played out with few goalmouth incidents.

It had been a tight game which Brora managed well and restricted Pollok to very few scoring opportunities – especially in the second half. So Pollok’s Scottish Cup adventure came to an end at the third round stage once again. The players and coaching staff can be proud of their efforts in the games against Benburb, Penicuik, Gala Fairydean and Brora Rangers. A special mention must go to the travelling Lok support of over 100 who travelled the 231 miles to Brora – the longest a Pollok side have ever travelled for a competitive fixture.

A fantastic Pollok support made the long journey north.

 

FULL TIME

BRORA RANGERS 1 – 0 POLLOK

GOAL: MacCrae (34′)

Attendance: 296

Report by Peter Thomson

Photos from Justine Clark and Northsport Photography

 

Pollok Man of the Match: Luke Main

In his first appearance since mid-August, Main was a standout for Pollok, winning several aerial balls and creating a few chances in the first half. An exciting glimpse of what he can offer the team upon his return.

 

SFA Highlights:

Club Highlights from Mark Donnelly:

 

Post-match interview with Stewart Maxwell: