Bonnyrigg’s Roseburgh says last-gasp wins can help Rose regain title

Alex King scores to put Bonnyrigg Rose level. Picture: Ian Georgeson

Alex King scores to put Bonnyrigg Rose level. Picture: Ian Georgeson

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BONNYRIGG’S Stuart Roseburgh believes victories like Saturday’s last-gasp success over Kelty Hearts are the type that can help Rose retain their Super League title.

Roseburgh’s injury-time goal gave the home side all three points in this clash between two of the favourites for the championship.

“It was a delight to get that goal, especially after the injury worries I’ve had,” said Roseburgh. “I knew when I headed the ball that it was going in and I don’t head many goals.

“It was a massive result for us after losing the last two games. It’s scratching a result like this which will win you titles.”

Roseburgh’s manager, Max Christie, was a relieved man afterwards, saying: “We nicked it. It was a big game for us after a poor run recently and the lads have to be congratulated on the way they fought back after going a goal behind so early.

“It’s such an important win for us and one we need to keep on track to retain the title.”

The game started off at a cracking pace with the visitors taking the lead after only four minutes with a terrific goal from winger Stuart Cargill. Damon Gray controlled the ball in the D before sliding it out wide right to Cargill, who drove the ball across the keeper and into the far corner of the net. Bonnyrigg were stunned but came out fighting and Kelty keeper Alan Fleming showed why he has been called up into the Scotland Juniors squad with a string of superb saves as Rose unleashed shot after shot at him.

A goal had to come and it did with a piece of sublime football from Alex King. He too showed why he has also been called up to the Scotland squad when, after taking the ball at his feet from Liam McKenna, flicked it over his marker’s head before drilling it past Fleming for a stunning strike.

Level at the break, it was Bonnyrigg who took the lead for the first time in the 57th minute. King drove at the Kelty defence before rifling a shot which keeper Fleming palmed out to Bonnyrigg’s right. Sean Grady collected the ball and crossed for substitute Kris Renton to rise and power a header back across goal and into the net.

Kelty responded and Bonnyrigg’s lead lasted only five minutes when they gave away a free-kick down their right. Darren Smith sent over a great ball to the back post where Brian Ritchie rose unmarked to head past goalkeeper Andy Carlin.

There were great chances at both ends as both teams went for the win and it was Bonnyrigg who snatched it.

Renton, who made a big impression after coming on for the injured Paul Shields, won the ball down the right wing, looked up and saw Roseburgh at the back post. He sent over the perfect ball for Roseburgh, giving him time to decide where to head the ball, and he looped it back across the keeper for a dramatic winning goal. This was a vital win for Bonnyrigg after losing last week at Camelon. Kelty, meanwhile, are a strong side with several players who are comfortable on the ball. They will no doubt be challenging for the title.

Striker Renton, who had a huge influence on the game, said: “That’s the best we’ve played all season. I enjoy being the main striker and to come away from a game as big as this with a goal and an assist feels great. I have a target of around 30 goals and believe I can get that. For my goal, it was a great ball from Sean and all I had to do was guide it home. We’ve a great squad here and I want to train hard and give the manager a headache before each game.”

Bonnyrigg Rose: Carlin, McLeish, Stv Thomson, McKenna, Woodburn, Dunn, King, Burrell, Shields (Renton), Grady, Roseburgh. Subs: Archibald, Stp Thomson, Hendrie, Burgess.

Kelty: Fleming, Philp, Forbes, Winiarski, N O McCabe( A Gray), Ritchie, Smith, McCabe, C Courts, D Gray, Cargill (Bathgate). Subs: Penman, T Courts, Lunn.

• The SJFA have announced a squad of 20 for a training session at Hannah Park, Shotts, next Sunday in preparation for a Challenge match against the Republic of Ireland on October 6. Local clubs are well represented with Sean Grady and Alex King from Bonnyrigg joined by Roddy McLennan and Tommy Coyne of Linlithgow.