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Match Report : Whitletts Vics

Irvine Victoria 1 - Whitletts Vics 1

A second half strike from Adam Forsyth saw an improving Whitletts come from behind to gain a share of the spoils against the league leaders at Victoria Park.

This was a cracking advert for Ayrshire District League football and both side could point to instances in the game where the match could have swung their way but at the end of the day the Dam Park side were disappointed not to come away with all three points.

Morgan Brown, signed on loan from Troon earlier in the day, turned in a Man of the Match performance for Whitletts and could prove to be another important signing for Vics in the run-in.

In a tense start to the game it was the home side who had the better of the early and Sean Mears should have gave them the lead in the 16th minute when a defensive clearance broke off a Whitletts defender into his path but the midfielder fired wide.

Louis Kerr had the ball in the net for Whitletts sixty seconds later but was adjudged to be offside but in the 20th minute the home side took the lead with a goal that visiting keeper Marty Fraser will want to forget. There appeared to be little danger as the keeper raced from his line to collect a long ball forward but he misjudged the run of the ball as it ran past him, allowing Irvine full back David Smith to cut the ball back from the byeline to give David Adams a simple tap in to put the league leaders in front.

In recent months Whitletts heads would have gone down but they regrouped and gave a spirited fightback. Forsyth found the side netting with a shot on the turn from a Craig Fisher free kick and then home keeper Chris Lamb did well to save a Louis Kerr drive from the edge of the box.

Irvine had a goal ruled out just before the break for a narrow offside decision after Mears found the net but they had to settle for a one goal lead going in at the break.

The home side started the second period strongly and Fraser redeemed himself with a superb save at full stretch to turn a Jordan Craig strike round the post but Whitletts withstood that early pressure and in the 51st minute they were back on level terms. A Raymond Buchanan free kick into the area beat George Bonner and Forsyth nipped in behind to control the ball before firing past Lamb.

A sneaky Craig Fisher free kick under the defensive wall almost caught out Lamb to saved at full stretch as Whitletts took charge of the proceedings but despite their possession they couldn’t find a way through a resolute Irvine defence.

The Victoria Park side worked a neat free kick themselves when former Whitletts player David Cunningham worked a neat 1-2 with Kenny Parris but the midfielders strike was off target, flashing just wide of the post.

Meanwhile Whitletts best chance came when Louis Kerr was raced onto a through ball only to be thwarted by Lamb as the home keeper raced off his line to block and in the dying moments of the game the visitors thought that they had won all three points but Isaac Kerr’s header from a Fisher free kick flew inches over the bar.

A share of the spoils won’t leave either side downbeat and will see the visitors go into next weeks tie at Ardeer with an air of growing confidence.

Irvine Victoria
1. Lamb 2. Smit 3.Wood 4. Young 5. Bonner 6. Craig 7. Mears 8. Davidson 9. Parris 10. Adams 11. Cunningham (Adam 82)
Subs (not used) 12. D. Wilson 14. C.Wilson 15. Bolton 16. Singleton

Whitletts Victoria
1. Fraser 2. Anderson 3. Brown 4. Mullen 5. I. Kerr 6. Buchanan 7. Fisher 8. L. Kerr (Milligan 87) 9. Forsyth 10. Barbour (Boyd 68) 11. Sloan
Subs (not used) 15. Ogston 16. Dempsey 17. McClymont

Referee: Ross Menzies