League: South Challenge Cup

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Pollok v Eglinton

The goals from Mark Donnelly:

Att: 440

Pollok welcomed Eglinton to Newlandsfield for the 1st round of the South Challenge Cup. The sun was still shining on the south side of Glasgow but the temperature had dropped considerably from the previous week’s game with Glenafton.

Eglinton – based in Kilwinning – were first time visitors to Newlandsfield having only joined the West Of Scotland Football League this season.

Murdie McKinnon made six changes from that league win. Longmuir, MacKenzie, Sideserf, Duff, Buchanan and Forde coming in for Lumsden, Rumsby, Menzies, Esplin, Lyon and Docherty. Some of the changes enforced, others more motivated by squad rotation.

Shooting down the hill the home side dominated from the off. A long ball from Longmuir was latched on to by Forde as he bustled his way through the centre of the defence. His left foot shot was dragged wide of the post. The attacks kept on coming and the second of two inviting crosses in quick succession found Duff alone at the back post. His first touch got away from him a bit and allowed the keeper to block the shot.

With thirteen minutes on the clock Pollok took the lead. Longmuir rolled it out to Sideserf and so began a passing move thru MacKenzie, Dykes and Christie which saw the defence split and as Buchanan ran on to it he was fouled just inside the box. Forde despatched the penalty right down the middle.

Three minutes later another flowing passing move across the pitch saw MacKenzie find Duff down the left. He did well to hold off a challenge before producing the perfect cut-back from the bye-line. Forde was on hand to sweep home a left foot strike into the bottom corner.

Just past the half way mark in the opening period Eglinton had a sight of goal. A midfielder rode a tackle and then curled a shot inches past the post with Longmuir scrambling.

Whenever Pollok injected a bit of pace into either their running or their passing they looked dangerous and chances were created. Seconds after Christie had burst to the bye line and cut the ball back it was recycled to Dykes – playing in a deeper role than usual – who produced an offside trap beating pass to sending Forde through. His trusty left foot duly delivered his hat-trick with seven minutes of the half remaining.

On the stroke of half-time Pollok made it four. Dykes gained possession on the halfway line and passed it forward to Forde who produced a subtle little flick to direct the ball into Buchanan’s path. He set off for goal showing skill and pace to get thru the defence before showing composure to coolly prod the ball past the advancing keeper.

To Eglinton’s credit they came out in the second half with an attacking intent. After winning a couple of corners they produced a decent thirty yard strike which Longmuir was solidly behind.

Pollok soon re-asserted their dominance however and in the fifty first minute came close to another goal. A period of solid passing ended with McCann scampering down the right wing and cutting it back for Dykes whose curling shot was only inches off target. A couple of minutes later a glorious chance was passed up by Duff as he could only head an inch perfect Christie cross wide of the target with the goal beckoning.

With Pollok’s next attack Christie produced a cross of similar quality to his previous one and Buchanan was on hand to head home from six yards out.

The shots and substitutions continued apace as the second half wore on with Christie, Fraser, Lyon and Krol all having off target efforts. Pollok’s sixth goal eventually arrived in the eightieth minute. Good combination play by MacKenzie and Lyon ended with the former whipping in a low cross. Buchanan’s initial effort was partially saved by the keeper but Buchanan was on hand to slide the ball home from a tight angle to complete his hat-trick.

The home fans in the crowd of 440 went home happy having seen a couple of hat-tricks and more than a few decent performances. The reward for Pollok’s victory is a home tie with Clydebank as they look to better last season’s run to the quarter finals where they went down to eventual winners Auchinleck Talbot.

It’s the first cup action of the season as Pollok welcome Eglinton to Newlandsfield in the South Challenge Cup.
It’s a first ever meeting between the sides. Kilwinning based, Eglinton joined the West of Scotland Football League set up this season, they take their name from a former Kilwinning Junior side that went defunct back in 1936, they are managed by former Kilwinning Rangers amateurs’ boss, William Shearer. Their colours are red and white vertical stripes with blue shorts and are nicknamed ‘The Jousters’, after the Eglinton Tournament, which was a medieval style joust that took place in 1839. Eglinton competed in the Ayrshire amateur leagues for a year, as Kilwinning Rangers AFC, before being accepted into Division 4 of the WoSFL, most of the team had moved up from under 19 and 21 level together under boss Shearer. They will play their home games at Kilwinning Sports Club.
Eglinton have played three games in Division 4 and have yet to pick up any points. Their first game of the season, was a 3-1 defeat away to Campbeltown, followed up by another 3-1 defeat at home to Thorn Athletic, last weekend they lost 6-0 away to Kilsyth Athletic. Eglinton will be coming to Newlandsfield hoping to achieve a famous result.
Pollok are joint top of the embryonic Premier Division table with two wins and a draw from the opening three games, last weekend seen the ‘Lok come out on top against Glenafton, with a 3-2 win at Newlandsfield, Stuart McCann and a double from Darren Christie with the goals.
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Auchinleck Talbot vs. Pollok

Highlights from Mark Donnelly:

Goals from Mark Donnelly:

Post match with Murdie:

Match Report by: Peter Thomson

After an unkind draw Pollok travelled to Beechwood Park to face Auchinleck Talbot in the pick of the quarter final ties in the South Challenge Cup. The league games between the pair this season having produced a pulsating 3-3 draw and a dull 1-0 win for Talbot. Not surprisingly this game was to fall somewhere in the middle of those two in terms of entertainment.

Pollok made four changes from the insipid draw with Hurlford the previous week. Sideserf, Esplin, Horne and Fraser all returning to the side with Menzies, Dykes, Duff and Forde dropping out.

A frenetic opening period saw tackles flying in and misplaced passes as both teams looked to impose themselves on the game. The importance of the match adding an edge and a nervousness.

In the 14th minute Pollok had their first sniff of goal. A long throw from Wharton was flicked on by McGregor and Fraser’s header from six yards out went over the bar.

The home side’s first sniff at goal came midway through the half and was a whole lot closer to opening the scoring. A corner from the left led to a bit of a stramash before a low shot was sent goalwards. Horne just managed to get a foot to it on the goal-line and deflected it onto the post. When the ball was recycled into the box another low shot was pushed round the post by Longmuir.
Minutes later another Pollok long throw brought about a great chance. This time it was a Talbot defender who flicked on and Fraser didn’t get the connection he was looking for from six yards out allowing Leishman to make a comfortable save.

Pollok threatened again with a sweeping move which went from right wing-back, Grant to left wing-back, Lyon and back again. Grant blasting over the bar from a tight angle having beaten his man on the edge of the box.

The second half started with the away side on top although a misplaced header by Esplin gave Samson a sight of goal and Longmuir had to pull off a smart double save to twice deny the striker.

Pollok took the lead in the 57th minute from a set-piece. Forde’s in-swinging corner from the right headed in at the near post by Grant.

Minutes later Pollok almost doubled their lead. Another Wharton throw into the box was flicked on to Forde who controlled it on his chest before executing a beautiful overhead kick which flew inches over the bar with Leishman beaten.

Then with just over 20 minutes to go came the moment which swung the match in the home side’s favour. A triple substitution by Sloan saw Talbot bring on Shankland, Boylan and Wilson and they immediately set about putting the Pollok defence under pressure.
In the 75th minute a good pass out to the right found Shankland in acres of space. He looked up and played the perfect low cross to Samson who slide home the equaliser from six yards out.

Minutes later a similar move – this time from a free-kick – saw Samson put his attempt just over the bar as Pollok started to defend deeper and deeper. In a portent of things to come Shankland then slipped Samson through but his attempted lob was weak and just fell into Longmuir’s hands.

With three minutes to go a fairly aimless looking ball over the top was missed by the Pollok defence and Samson nipped in to slip a tidy finish from a tight angle past Longmuir.

Pollok mounted a bit of late pressure in search of an equaliser but their only effort on target was a Forde free-kick which a well-positioned Leishman saved comfortably.

Having given the large travelling support such hope with 30 minutes to go it was ultimately a crushing disappointment to go out the cup. After an even first half Pollok had been the better team in the opening of the second half and deserved to be ahead but they just couldn’t see it through against a Talbot side transformed by the triple substitution. So Pollok’s first attempt at the South Challenge Cup was ended at the quarter final stage. They will hope to go further in future years.


It’s back to South Challenge Cup action this weekend for Pollok and a trip to Beechwood Park to face Auchinleck Talbot.

We have now reached the Quarter Final stage of the tournament having beaten Vale of Clyde 4-0, Harthill Royal 2-1, Clydebank 2-1 and in the last round beating Lowland League side, University of Stirling 3-1.

Talbot have dispatched Forth 1-0, West Calder 7-1, Irvine Meadow 3-1 and finally Caledonian Braves 3-1.

Last weekend Pollok were held at home 1-1 against Hurlford which gave Talbot the opportunity to regain top spot in the WoSFL Premier Division, duly taken when they beat Bonnyton Thistle 3-0.

Pollok don’t have a great recent record against Talbot, our last win coming back in 2018 at Beechwood Park. Six games have taken place between the teams since, with Talbot winning five and then the 3-3 draw that took place earlier this season at Newlandsfield. The last match between the teams was on February 12th at Beechwood Park when Talbot won 1-0 in the league.

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University of Stirling vs Pollok

The goals from Mark Donnelly:

Pollok are back in South Challenge Cup action this weekend, with an away trip to face University of Stirling. The match takes place at Westfield Park in Denny.

This will be the first meeting between the clubs and will be a good test for Pollok coming up against a Lowland League team.

The University of Stirling Football Club were formed in 1969, they joined the Lowland League in 2013. In 2008 the students joined the East of Scotland First Division and won the league in 2010. In the same season they won the Scottish Universities Championship. In 2012, they won the East of Scotland Premier Division. The University side have won the South Challenge Cup in 2012 and the Lowland League Cup in 2014. They are currently managed by Chris Geddes.

This season sees the University sit 15th in the 18 team Lowland League, with a record of 7 wins, 6 draws and 14 defeats.

Both clubs go into the match having suffered defeats last weekend, Pollok going down to a late goal at Darvel while Stirling Uni went down 3-1 away to Celtic B team.

In the previous rounds of the South Challenge Cup, Stirling University dispatched of Burntisland Shipyard 3-1 and Gala Fairydean Rovers 2-0 both away from home then in the last round they beat Hurlford 2-1 at home.

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Clydebank v Pollok

Goals from Mark Donnelly (camera equipment malfunction has caused Mark some tech issues)

Pollok visit Holm Park on Saturday to face Clydebank in an all WoSFL Premier Division South Challenge Cup match up.

The ‘Lok’s fine run of results continued last week at Newlandsfield with a 1-0 win over Benburb as we maintained our 11 point lead in the league.

Clydebank’s league match away to Largs was postponed due to the weather. The Bankies have been busy recently with their Scottish Cup exploits which came to an end after an extra time loss to Annan Athletic, after they had dispatched Dalkeith, Elgin City and Clyde on their way to the Fourth round. They have proved to be a good Cup team recently.

In the league Clydebank are fourth with a record of 14 wins, 6 draws and 6 defeats from their 26 matches played.

Pollok have a good recent record against Clydebank, the Bankies last win coming in the Central League Cup back in 2017. Last time out Pollok left Holm Park with all three points after a 2-0 win in the Premier Division on Septmeber 4th last year. Josh Weir had put the ‘Lok in front and a last minute Adam Forde strike sealed the win. That was our 4th win in a row at Holm Park.

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Pollok vs Harthill Royal

Highlights from Mark Donnelly:

Goals from Mark Donnelly:

Att: 470
Pollok are in South Challenge Cup action on Saturday as we welcome Harthill Royal to Newlandsfield.
Last week Pollok left New Cumnock with a 1-1 draw away to Glenafton, Bryan Wharton on the scoresheet for the second time in a few weeks.
At the same time, Harthill were taking on St Peters in a WOSFL Division 4 match going down 3-2 at home. Harthill currently sit 6th in the eight team league with 15 points from 16 games. They have won 4, drawn 3 and lost 9 so far in their league campaign.
Harthill are based in the Greenrigg area of Harthill, the club joined the Juniors East Region in 1992. Harthill joined the WOSFL for this season, as although their ground falls under West Lothian, the club were able to choose which league to join due to the village of Harthill being in Lanarkshire. The clubs last piece of silverware came back in 2005 when they lifted the Dechmont League Cup.
Pollok manager Murdie MacKinnon gives us his thoughts on the cup tie.

“We look forward to welcoming Harthill Royal to Newlandsfield in the South Challenge Cup.” The boss said.

“This will be a fantastic occasion and we are under no illusions that we will be in for a very competitive encounter.

“As with all our opponents, Harthill have been given the upmost respect and we have prepared well for the tie. We have done our homework and had them watched. We know what dangers Harthill will bring.

“Again, we will respect Harthill by going out with a strong side that will take the game to them and we will be a real threatening forward but also show grit and determination not to concede.

“The South Challenge Cup is a tournament we want to go far in so we will not underestimate any opposition that we play. We will continue to be humble and keep being professional about our business.

“Anything less can come back to bite you. Having a great attitude and showing outstanding professionalism are key. Our players have epitomised these characteristics and qualities So far this season.

“We look forward to the game and will go all out to get the desired result.”

A note to supporters that there will be a foodbank collection before the match against Harthill and the home games against Cumnock on December 4th and the Campbeltown match the following week. Collection will be at Pavillion.

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Vale of Clyde vs. Pollok

Chris Duff opens for Lok in 26 minutes.

Into the second half and further goals from Callum Graham (50), David Brownlie (55) and Stuart McCann (58) have Lok in firm control.

The goals from Mark Donnelly:

The highlights from Mark Donnelly:

It’s a Glasgow Derby this weekend in the South of Scotland Challenge Cup, as Pollok travel to Tollcross to take on Vale of Clyde.

Last week, Pollok beat Kirkintilloch Rob Roy, 4-1, in Cumbernauld to keep the pressure on at the top of the WOSFL Premier Division table. Goal of the match has to go to goalkeeper, Jordan Longmuir.

At the same time, Vale of Clyde were beating Wishaw away, 4-1 also. They have scored 13 goals in the last 3 games, running into a bit of form. They currently sit 13th in Conference C, on 29 points, won 2, drawn 3 and lost 9.

The Tin Pail are one of the oldest teams around, formed in 1873. They won the Scottish Junior Cup three times, the last being in 1904, showing their early dominance at the Junior level. The last trophy they won was the Central League Div 1 title in 2005.

Colin Reilly took over from Mark Mackay in August and seems to have the team picking up some results in the last few weeks.

Pollok meanwhile are on a nine game unbeaten run and will be hoping to continue their fine form.

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