John McNaught reports from Blairmount Park on the cup tie that had it all between Newton Stewart and Hawick Royal Albert.
NEWTON STEWART 2 HAWICK ROYAL ALBERT 2
This William Hill Scottish Cup Preliminary cup-tie at Blairmount Park last Saturday between Newton Stewart and East of Scotland side Hawick Royal Albert was a match that had everything. The match ended in a two-all draw following an exciting match in which the home side were on top for large parts of the game.
The early part of the match was fairly even with the teams playing cautiously as they settled into a pattern of play. After ten minutes Hawick enjoyed a good spell of possession but their efforts on goal were off target and the game remained goal-less. With twenty minutes on the clock the Creesiders took the lead when new signing Adam Jordan shot from twenty five yards with an effort that deceived the visiting keeper and flew into the net over his outstretched arms. Hawick tried hard to get back into the match but Newton held out although with a minute to go until the half time break they lost Adam Black when he was given a straight red card. With play taking place within the Hawick penalty box the visitors broke away and as bodies clashed in mid-field Black was adjudged to have kicked an opponent and was dismissed.
As play re-started the visitors looked to fancy their chances against the ten-man Newton Stewart and although having the majority of possession the home defence stood firm and although Newton had their chances on several breakaways they could not find a second goal that looked as though it would have won the contest.
However, with thirteen minutes left to play Greig Summers of Hawick fired in a swerving shot from thirty yards which deceived Newton keeper Harry Fidler who stood motionless as the ball flew into the net for what was a very good goal. Three minutes later with the visitors on the ascendancy they were awarded a corner on the right and when the ball was played in Gordon Ramsey rose head and shoulders above the Newton defence to head fiercely into the net to give his side the lead. Newton then went full out to try and take something from the match and were rewarded in time added on when central defender Lewis Richardson was on the end of a Kyle McCutcheon free kick to head home the equaliser. What then happened threw the home side into disarray when firstly Robert Middleton was red-carded for celebrating what was adjudged to have been an improper gesture which was followed by Richardson being dismissed for using abusive and improper language to the referee, leaving the home side with only eight men to see out the match. Hawick managed one last attack but Newton Stewart held out to earn a draw which sees them travelling to Hawick this weekend for a replay but minus the three red-carded players.