Auchinleck Talbot 1 Cove Rangers 0

William Hill Scottish Cup Second Round
Saturday October 19, 2019
At Beechwood Park
Attendance: 750

COVE Rangers returned home feeling they had been mugged after a last gasp header from Dwayne Hyslop gave Auchinleck Talbot a totally undeserved victory at Beechwood Park.
Cove had totally dominated proceedings and were denied the lead in the 70th minute when a Jimmy Scott lob rebounded to safety off the Talbot crossbar.
It looked as if they were going to earn a replay, which was the very least they deserved, until the Ayrshire men did their smash and grab act to ensure they are the ones who advance into the third round.
It will be hard for Paul Hartley and his men to take because there looked no danger of Cove losing a game that they were streets ahead in as far as possession, passing football and creating chances went - against opponents who were more than happy to defend in depth.
Cove were right at it from the off and unlucky not to see Connor Scully open the scoring after just two minutes.
His powerful shot from the edge of the area was going in until home keeper Andy Leishman dived full length to push the ball wide of his left post.
Fraser Aird then played a clever one-two with Mitch Megginson before curling a 25-yard shot wide of the target.
Fraser Fyvie was pulling all the strings in the middle of the park and created Cove’s next chance with an excellent pass forward to Aird but the winger’s shot from 18-yards went wide.
Fyvie tried again with a brilliant ball in from the right that Scott and Aird just failed to connect with as it sped across the face of the Talbot six yard box.
Aird then fed a corner in from the left and when the ball dropped to Scully he thumped his 20-yard shot high over the crossbar.
Cove’s best chance of the half came in the 39th minute, after Megginson had played a  pass down the right to Matty Smith.
His cross looked perfect for Scott but the Cove striker timed his jump wrong and sent his eight yard header wide of the target.
It was more of the same in the second period as Talbot struggled to even get a touch of the ball at times.
The half began with Scully hitting a 30 yard shot that was held by Leishman.
Within a minute, Aird picked out Smith with a cross from the left but the young striker nodded wide of the far post.
It was all Cove and Aird was unfortunate again when he saw a 14-yard effort flash wide of the Talbot keeper’s left post.
Ayrshire referee Kevin Graham could have sent off Talbot’s Stephen Wilson in the 53rd minute for blatantly kicking Cove skipper Megginson in the 53rd minute but chose to only book the home midfielder.
Megginson soon recovered and hit a 16-yard shot that was held by Leishman.
He followed that with another shot from a similar area that was also gathered by the Talbot.
There was only one side looking as if they wanted to win the tie and Cove were desperately unlucky not to break the deadlock with 20 minutes to go.
Scott turned cleverly at the edge of the Talbot box then left Leighton in no man’s land with a clever lob but the ball then bounced off the top of the crossbar instead of going in.
Cove tried again, with Fyvie feeding the ball to substitute Jamie Masson but his shot sped over the top of the Talbot goal.
It looked as if Cove would have to be content with a replay back at Balmoral Stadium until Talbot substitute Bryan Boylan broke clear on the right wing with two minutes to go.
He then fired over a fine cross that HYSLOP nodded home from close range to give Talbot victory with what was their only shot on target the entire afternoon.


AUCHINLECK TALBOT: Leishman, Lyle, Pope, McPherson, McCracken, Armstrong, Hyslop, S Wilson (Boylan 80), G Wilson, Samson (Healy 80), Shankland (Glasgow 73)
Subs: Young, McDowall, White, Hewitt.

COVE RANGERS: McKenzie, Yule, Milne, Ross, Higgins, Smith (Masson 69), Fyvie, Scully, Aird, Megginson, Scott (Robertson 85).
Subs: Redford, Redman, Brown, Demus.

Referee: Kevin Graham.