East of Scotland: Rivals set for cup final dress-rehearsal

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Tynecastle and Leith Athletic will play out a dress rehearsal of next weekend’s Alex Jack Cup final when the teams meet at Saughton Enclosure tomorrow on East of Scotland League duty.

Both clubs have been in great form recently and deservedly booked their place in next Sunday’s showpiece match which will take place at the Pennypit, Prestonpans (kick-off 2.30pm).

However, it’s crucial league points that are up for grabs tomorrow with visitors Leith occupying second spot in the table and sitting just two points adrift of current leaders Preston Athletic, who have played a game more.

Leith ran out convincing winners 5-1 over Eyemouth United at Meadowbank 3G on Tuesday night and will be confident ahead of their trip across the city.

Meanwhile, Tynecastle’s only blemish in the league so far this term was a 3-1 loss to Heriot-Watt University in August.

Stevie Vinter’s men, however, have won eight matches on the bounce in all competitions since their defeat to the students almost eight weeks ago.

Tynie are just a point worse off than tomorrow’s opponents in a four-way tie for third alongside Kelty Hearts, Lothian Thistle Hutchison Vale and Heriot-Watt.

Banji Koya’s Watt visit Stirling University looking to build on last weekend’s smash-and-grab victory over Burntisland Shipyard. The Riccarton-based side are beginning to find their feet again following three straight defeats.

Koya also has a new batch of players to call upon following last month’s freshers trials.

There’s also an East Lothian derby at Hibs’ East Mains Training Centre as Ormiston, who have lost all seven league fixtures so far this term, host in-form Preston.