Raith Rovers 0 - 2 Queen's Park

By Andyboy
Last updated : 11 November 2007
Billy Stark started the match with a pretty defensive formation, but little did anyone know the kind of attractive and free-flowing football that Queen's Park played was going to occur. Mark Cairns was in goals, playing his last game prior to a knee operation next week. Paul Paton, Damiano Agostini, Mick Dunlop and Stephen Canning, the back four which triumphed in last year's playoffs, were in defence and Paul Ronald was in a holding midfield role. In front of him were Stuart Kettlewell, Alan Trouten, Paul Cairney and Mark Ferry while Stuart McGrady was the lone striker up front.

Queen's had a chance to open the scoring seconds after the starting whistle. Paul Ronald sent Alan Trouten up the right with a through ball and he delivered a tantalsing cross into the middle of the penalty area. Connection was made by the diving Stuart McGrady but he glanced his header across Fahey and narrowly past the post. Rovers thought they were ahead when Robert Sloan's corner blew into the net with the help of a swirling North Sea wind, but ref Boyd saw David Goodwillie foul Cairns as the ball flew across.

Queen's had their best chance so far on 12 minutes. Cairns long goal kick bounced over Marvin Andrews and Stuart McGrady latched on, only to send his effort agonisingly onto the post and wide, with only keeper Fahey to beat. The "Ferry Corner" almost resulted in a goal but Fez's effort, while missed by Fahey was sweeped off the line to safety by Davison.

Raith Rovers should have had the lead on their next venture up the park. Ryan Borris' long ball found Marvin Andrews who headed downwards from two yards, and he then saw the ball bounce up and over the crossbar much to the amusement of the Spiders' support. Rovers were now on top and Mark Cairns had to be at his best to deny Robert Sloan as his header looked certain to nestle in the top corner. Stephen Canning then managed to force the ball over his own crossbar before Big Marvin Andrews could make contact with the ball.

Queen's last chance came right on the hour mark. Alan Trouten burst onto the byeline and his cutback was hammered towards goal by Stuart Kettlewell but Fahey held well. Trouten and Paton were getting numerous crosses into the box but the big Raith defence were dealing with the high balls.

If Queen's had ended the half well, we started the second period immensely and within four minutes, we had the lead. Paul Cairney picked the ball up 40 yards from goal and burst past three Rovers defenders. After wriggling inside away from Andrews he curled a right footer towards the back post and it bounced up and over the dodgy looking Fahey to spark bedlam in the stand behind the goals.

Marvin Andrews had two headed chances to level for Rovers, but the Trinidadian international was denied twice by great saves from veteran Mark Cairns. Paul Paton forced a decent diving save from Fahey after a neat one two with Stuart McGrady, before a stunning Mick Dunlop tackle somehow robbed Hislop of the ball as he shaped up to level from twelve yards. Queen's were given a blow when Mark Cairns broke his nose in a collision with Campbell, and after attempting to play on for ten minutes, he was replaced by young Scott Murray, making only his 2nd appearance in a Queen's jersey, and the blonde haired keeper was a hero straight away, making an absolutely spectacular world class save down to his right, to deny Campbell's header. Mick Dunlop was again at his best to acrobaticly head Wilson's effort over the crossbar on the goal line before Queen's finished the game off deep into injury time.

Cairney's deft flick saw him past Wilson twenty yards from goal, he laid it on a plate for Mark Ferry whose shot was well saved by Fahey, the ball fell to Cairney again who skipped past Fahey before sliding the ball past the line line of Rovers defence, Marvin Andrews on the goal line, to spark mental celebrations in the stands and on the park.

QUEEN'S PARK: Mark Cairns (Scott Murray), Paul Paton, Mick Dunlop, Paul Ronald (Tony Quinn), Damiano Agostini, Alan Trouten, Stuart Kettlewell, Paul Cairney, Stuart McGrady (Robert Dunn), Stephen Canning, Mark Ferry

SUBS NOT USED: Andy Boslem, Shaun Molloy

GOALSCORER: Paul Cairney (49, 93)

REFEREE: Alan Boyd

ATTENDANCE: 1860

MAN OF THE MATCH: Paul Cairney

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