Light relief came to Derek Riddel as his Leith Athletic side recorded their first win of the East of Scotland Premier Division campaign at the third attempt.
Riddel’s men overcame Tynecastle 2-1, with a release of frustration sweeping through the home dressing-room after the match at Meadowbank 3G.
Leith had emerged from early-season encounters on the north side of the city – at Civil Service Strollers and at Spartans – with just a point from two matches, but they laid to rest any fears of a prolonged winless run by dispatching Tynie in an eventful contest. “It’s a good first win for us,” said Riddel, whose team now sit fifth in the top tier. “We started the league season slowly against Strollers and Spartans, but now we’re off the mark in terms of wins, I’m hoping the team can take confidence from that. The first league win moves us up the table and everyone can feel better about our chances.”
Both teams created a number of promising chances, with Leith goalkeeper Ian Gordon repelling a series of efforts by the visitors.
Leith striker Euan Campbell opened the scoring in the opening quarter of an hour and Chris Barrie scored the home side’s second with a 40-yard free kick on the hour mark. Tynecastle scored through Lukasz Czop with 15 minutes to go, but Leith held on for the win. Dougie Dalgleish, the Tynecastle boss, admitted his team simply didn’t match Leith on the day. But, the visitors’ supremo laid into the state of the artificial surface at Meadowbank, labelling the ground sub-standard.
“The pitch is awful. I do not mind playing on astro but the surface at Meadowbank is spongy and as a result the ball movement is not true. It is like playing on an air bed.”
Top of the table having played four league matches are Civil Service Strollers, whose boss Andy Raeburn was full of praise for his side as Reece Twist and Chris Ingles scored in a 2-0 victory at Coldstream. Raeburn said: “We played really well – it was a great battling performance from the whole team.”
In the Uni derby, Edinburgh University overcame Heriot-Watt by 2-1 at Peffermill. Dorian Ogunro, manager of the victors, insisted his team could and should have won by more.
“It’s always good to get three points - especially in the derby,” said Ogunro. “In the first half we were completely on top. We went 2-0 up but it could have been more.”
Calum Frain and Stefan Ross handed the hosts a half-time lead, and Heriot-Watt skipper Andy Forbes replied for the visitors in the second half.
At Forthbank Stadium, Stirling University’s East of Scotland outfit swept aside their Spartans counterparts, with the hosts’ Lee Nichol, Scott Tully, and Khan Williams-Mitchell all on target. Chris O’Day replied for the Ainslie Park men.
n Premier Division pair Craigroyston and Lothian Thistle Hutchison Vale met in the sole cup tie of the weekend, an Alex Jack Cup first round meeting, with Lothian triumphing 3-2 after extra time.
James Guy scored five minutes before the break to give Craigie a half-time lead, but Lothian’s Ryan Ma equalised on the hour. Craigroyston restored their lead through Steven McCormack on 82 minutes, but Sean Wringe levelled in the final minute of regulation time to force extra time. Brendan Edwards then struck the winner to secure a second-round berth for Lothian.