Local teams are up for the cup

Eight teams play this Saturday for a place in this season’s SFA Regional Cup (South) semi-finals.

Two Dumfries and Galloway Lowland League teams are hoping to make it through.

Threave Rovers should have a good chance of progression against East of Scotland Premier League side Lothian Thistle Hutchison Vale. This could well be a close match with Thistle lying in second in their league although with their games in hand they could well win the championship.

The Castle Douglas side, on the other hand, are struggling a bit this season but could have enough experience within their ranks to see off the East League side.

Dalbeattie Star line up against a strong Preston Athletic team and may have to be at their best to make it through although they also have the players in their squad who could see them progress.

Nithsdale Wanderers will have a game on their hands when Lowland League leaders Spartans come visiting. The Sanqhuar side are left flying the flag for the South in this competition and although they are expected to give a good account of themselves it would be a shock result if the Edinburgh side failed to make the semi-finals.

There are four South of Scotland League matches scheduled, three of which could well have a bearing on the destination of this season’s championship.

Wigtown and Bladnoch would appear to have the easiest of the tasks when they host bottom-placed Creetown at Trammondford Park in a contest they should win comfortably and do their goal difference a great deal of good.

Present leaders Newton Stewart, who have led the table since the beginning of the year, will have to be at their best to see of the challenge of Lochar Thistle but this is a must-win match for the Creesiders if they are to have any outside chance of landing the title. After this match, they have only one game left to play – and that is against Wigtown at Blairmount Park on a date still to be scheduled.

The same could be said about the game at St Mary’s Park where St Cuthbert Wanderers entertain Crichton for a match that could be very even. Saints look like they need to take the three points to keep up their challenge at the top but they will have to be at their best to see off a strong, experienced and much improved Hospital Park side who could yet have a say on who wins the championship.

The other match is at Palmerston Park where Fleet Star visit Heston Rovers, with the home side expected to win.

Fixtures for Saturday, March 15

SFA Regional Cup (South) quarter-finals

All kick-offs at 3pm unless otherwise stated

Lothian Thistle v Threave Rovers (2.30pm)

Preston Athletic v Dalbeattie Star

Nithsdale Wanderers v Spartans

East Kilbride v Stirling University

South of Scotland League

All kick-off at 3pm

Heston Rovers v Fleet Star

Newton Stewart v Lochar Thistle

St Cuthbert Wanderers v Crichton

Wigtown and Bladnoch v Creetown