McBookie Super League Premier Division



By Stewart McConnell

BELOW par Buffs had their title hopes dented on Easter Saturday against a streetwise Pollok side who resurrected their dreams of glory with this victory.

Kilwinning dominated the first half, but missed some decent chances. However after the break they adopted a more attacking approach but were able to unlock the home defence.

Buffs and their fans were in three minutes when with the first action of the match, a Carlo Monti free-kick from 20 yards spun out of Davie Winters' reach. However Bryan Boylan won the ball and cut it back to Craig Pettigrew who drove a shot home from eight yards.

Pollok fashioned an opportunity four minutes later when former Irvine Meadow man Stuart McCann had his header from eight yards well saved by Adam Strain.

The hosts were enjoying a good spell and in 14 minutes a header followed by a shot from Stuart McCann crashed off the crossbar.

Pollok then had another opening in 17 minutes but Adam Forde shot well wide from 20 yards.

Buffs had an opening in 19 minutes when Bryan Boylan intercepted a miscued pass but shot narrowly wide from 20 yards.

There was also drama when home goalie Jamie Longmuir plated the ball against Winters and it almost ended up, in the net but he recovered possession in 20 minutes.

Michael Wardrope shot high and narrowly wide from 12 yards in 28 minutes for Buffs.

However Pollok levelled with a great goal in 34 minutes as Stuart McCann set up Forde to send a 25-yard lob low into the bottom corner of the net.

The hosts came so close in 41 minutes when Sena shot just behind the goal from 25 yards and they were growing in confidence.

Buffs made a change at half-time when Ben Lewis replaced Winters. However Pollok scored inn48 minutes when a Ryan McGregor shot was parried by Strain but former Auchinleck Talbot man Bryan Young knocked home the rebound from six yards.

The visitors were so close in 51 minutes when a Joe Coleman rocket from 16 yards was confidently saved.

Buffs defender Jamie Whyte made a vital clearance to foil Forde in 53 minutes after an error from Strain.

A Wardrope rocket from 25 yards was pushed away in 56 minutes.

Forde saw his effort from 25 yards well handled by the visiting goalie three minutes later. Ryan Nisbet came on for Buffs in 62 minutes and his pace caused the hosts problems.

Tommy Maitland replaced the injured Coleman in 67 minutes,

Buffs came so close when a Nisbet shot went across the face of goal after hitting the post in 68 minutes and a minute later a Lewis shot from 25 yards hit the post and glanced wide.

Lewis was harshly booked in 71 minutes when it looked like the foul had gone the other way.

Buffs wasted a chance in 74 minutes when Nisbet shot wildly over the bar from 25 yards.

A scissors kick from Winters was easily saved in 75 minutes as Buffs kept pressing.

Buffs had a great escape when Findlay Frye made a goal-line clearance to foil former Irvine Meadow man Mark Sideserf in 79 minutes.

Nisbet saw his effort from 25 yards well saved in 90 minutes.

Frye was unfairly sent off for a mistimed tackle on Bryan Young on full-time when it looked like a booking would suffice.

POLLOK: Longmuir; Evans, Sideserf, Wharton, Gallagher, Sena, Gary McCann, McGregor, Stuart McCann, Forde, Young. Subs: Byrne, Hall, McCluskey, Hepburn, Rowan.

KILWINNING RANGERS: Strain; Coleman, McCloskey, Pettigrew, Whyte, Frye, Monti, McGuinness, Winters, Wardrope, Boylan. Subs: Latta, Maitland, Lewis, Nisbet, Hanvey.