Lothian Thistle ready for third chapter of Huntly tie

Raymond Carr has no problems with tonight's match being played at Ainslie Park rather than Saughton Enclosure. Pic: Andy O'Brien
Raymond Carr has no problems with tonight's match being played at Ainslie Park rather than Saughton Enclosure. Pic: Andy O'Brien
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Lothian Thistle Hutchison Vale boss Raymond Carr was disappointed to see his side’s William Hill Scottish Cup third-round replay against Huntly called off on Saturday, but conceded it was the correct decision.

“Storm Desmond” wiped out a considerable chunk of the Scottish football fixture calendar, with high winds and rain creating farcical playing conditions. The cup tie – moved to Spartans’ artificial surface at Ainslie Park due to Saughton being unplayable – will now kick-off at 8pm tonight.

Lothian trained once the postponement was confirmed – and Carr admitted even that was a test. “It was probably the right decision,” he admitted. “We were down there anyway so we got the boys together and took them through a light training session, which was really difficult. Watching how the ball was in the conditions, it was the correct thing to do. The wind was picking up and it was difficult to keep the ball.”

With the pitch at Huntly’s Christie Park not exactly a bowling green, Carr believes the 3G surface will make for a better game. “I think it’ll suit both teams,” he explained. “It’s whoever adapts the quickest. I don’t know about Huntly, but we train on astro-turf anyway so we shouldn’t find it too difficult.”

Tonight’s winners will face Lowland League outfit East Kilbride, who produced arguably the result of the weekend with 2-1 win over Stenhousemuir. “East Kilbride have done absolutely brilliant,” he said. “They’ll be on a high and know what they’ve got to do now. We’ve met them before – they’ve beaten us and we’ve beaten them, so it’s a winnable tie for both teams if we get through. We’ve still got to take care of Huntly, but it’s something that players would be looking forward to.”