Danny is Spartans Main man in local derby pre-season win

Posted on Saturday, August 3rd, 2013

A “good result and workout which helped us all improve our match sharpness” was how Spartans two-goal hero Danny Main described the 4-1 victory against Craigroyston in the final pre-season match ahead of the Lowland League campaign.

After two trips to Dumfries in recent weeks, Spartans headed along Ferry Road (a four stops instead of a four hour bus trip) for this pre-season clash at St Marks Park.

Manager Dougie Samuel gave a starting berth to new signing Sean Mushin with Keith McLeod back in the squad following his summer break.

Spartans started the livelier of the two sides and within 6 minutes, they took the lead. Beesley winning a corner kick after some enterprising play up the line and from Motion’s in-swinger, Main rose like a salmon to head the ball into the bottom corner. 0-1.

Another trademark Motion set-piece almost doubled the lead however the Craigroyston keeper was equal to the task and pulled off a great save, turning the ball onto the bar.

With Spartans enjoying the bulk of play, Craigroyston made things harder for themselves after being reduced to ten men following Motion being at the end of a headbutt to the chest from their No.8.

Five minutes later, the yellow-booted Ross was inches away from getting on the scoresheet.  After springing the offside trap, he slotted it past the home keeper as he rushed out from his line to close down the striker.   Unfortunately for the former Edinburgh City man, his shot was agonisingly cleared off the line.

The hosts were on level terms in the 40th minute after Blaikie was adjudged to have upended a Craigroyston striker in the box and the Referee Doig immediately pointed to the spot, despite the remonstrations from the defender.  Bennett was sent the wrong way and the ball nestled in the back of the net. 1-1.

As the half drew to a close, a Whatley shot from 25 yards was blocked, however the rebound broke nicely to Main and from 12 yards out, he doubled his tally with what could generously be described as not the cleanest strike he’ll have at goal this season.  They all count as they say, as the ball spun out of the reach of the keeper and squeezed inside the post for a 2-1 half-time lead.

Half Time: Craigroyston 1-2 Spartans

An early second half opportunity from 30 yards for the home side saw Scott Bennett pull off a tremendous save as he dived to his right to tip a deflected shot over the bar.

Cometh the hour, cometh the pre-season substitutions and Danny O’Donnell and Keith McLeod entered the fray with Gary Cennerazzo and Robbie Ross making way.

A through ball from Main saw Beesley collect the ball tight on the touchline.  After drawing in the full back, he knocked the ball past the defender and as he hit the bye-line and ready to pull the trigger, an impromptu shirt-swapping attempt saw Beesley bundled to the turf.  It proved to be one of the whistler’s easiest decisions of the afternoon.

Despite the travelling support willing on Main to get his hat-trick, it was dead-ball specialist Motion who extended the Spartans lead with a drive into the bottom left corner. 1-3.

With one eye perhaps on the Lowland League kick-off just seven days away, fresh legs were introduced with 20 minutes to go and Beesley & Blaikie took a seat in the sheds and they were replaced by Grant & MacCuish.

It was a case of saving the best til last in terms of goals for Spartans.  With 10 minutes left on the clock, Mushin held up play on the edge of the box before sending the ball to substitute Grant, looking resplendent in his new colourful boots.

Grant worked an effortless looking one-two with McLeod and from 20 yards, the midfielder thumped the ball low and hard to beat the keeper at his inside post.

A 4-1 win at the newly promoted East of Scotland Premier side finished off a pre-season that Danny Main described post-match as “tough” however he hoped that the Ramsdens Cup ties v Threave and Queen of the South would stand the side in “good stead ahead of the Lowland League season.”

Main, a summer signing from Edinburgh University, was enthused by the result. “I thought we passed the ball very well at times and with Craigroyston going down to 10 men, it gave us a wee bit more space to work with. It was good to see the guys all get minutes on the park to help with match sharpness ahead of next week.”

Grabbing a brace of goals also pleased the big defender. “The first was from a corner the lads have been working on and it was good to come off.  The second was simply a case of being in the right place at the right time.”

Could he have had a hat-trick?  Main joked, “Not often I get two goals and Motion pulled rank for the third one, so I didn’t get the penalty to take!”

Team v Craigroyston: Bennett, Cennerazzo, Main, Sivewright, Blaikie, Whatley, Brown, Muhsin, Ross, Motion, Beesley.  Subs: O’Donnell, McLeod, Grant, MacCuish

Next Fixture

Date: 23/07/24
Opponent: Forfar Athletic
Venue:Ainslie Park
Competition: Premier Sports Cup
Kick off: 7.45pm

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