South Scene preview with John McNaught

The race for the South of Scotland League championship continues this Saturday with a full programme of matches scheduled to be played.

There are quite a few of the matches that look like they could have an effect on the top of the league table with leaders Lochar Thistle travelling to Hamilton to play Edusport Academy. Edusport were beaten at home last time out by Abbey Vale so Lochar may well fancy that they can emulate that one nil score line or even better it. The high flying Dumfries side will be well up for this match although it is a contest that could go either way.

Abbey Vale fresh from that defeat of Edusport will be another team who will be well up for their contest which takes place at Blairmount where they meet Newton Stewart. Vale held their own for large parts of the last match between these two teams with Newton eventually running out close winners so again this is a match that is tough to forecast who will come out on top although the home side will be keen to maintain their domestic unbeaten record.

Wigtown and Bladnoch travel to Moffat to play Upper Annandale in what could be another close encounter. Uppers have a good home record but South champions Wigtown will be keen to maintain their challenge at the top and will start this match as slight favourites to take the three points.

There is a Stewartry derby at Kirkcudbright where St Cuthbert Wanderers play neighbours Fleet Star in a match the home side should win but with the managerial turnaround at St Mary’s Park Star are expected to take advantage and show up well in a contest that could well end up as a score draw.

Heston Rovers play hosts to Mid-Annandale at Palmerston Park with home advantage maybe being the deciding factor although the Lockerbie side are expected to give a good account of themselves in another match that could end up with both teams sharing the points.

Crichton are at home to bottom placed Dumfries YMCA and are expected to add another three points to their tally against the struggling newcomers. The home side produced a good result last weekend against Saints and unfortunately for the visitors Crichton do not look to be in any danger of losing this contest and probably score more than a few goals as well. Nithsdale Wanderers travel to play Creetown at Castle Cary Park for another match that could go close with home advantage once again probably deciding where the points end up. Creetown have an array of good players and once they gel they will be a match for most South teams and this may well be their opportunity to show their potential against a Sanquhar side who have struggled for consistency so far this season.