West rivals favourites in cup, say Lithgae and Bonnyrigg bosses

Linlithgow Rose boss Todd Lumsden accepts Auchinleck are the team to beat
Linlithgow Rose boss Todd Lumsden accepts Auchinleck are the team to beat
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Linlithgow Rose boss Todd Lumsden says his team be facing the favourites for the Scottish Junior Cup when they meet West giants Auchinleck Talbot in the semi-finals next month.

Rose, who last won the competition in 2010, will host the 11-times winners at Prestonfield on Saturday, April 15 with the return leg at Beechwood Park the following weekend.

“It’s a good draw,” said Lumsden. “Whoever we got was going to be a tough one anyway, but I’m delighted. It’ll be a tough tie but, if we can get through it, we’ll have a right good chance. It’ll be a tough game because they are doing well in their league and probably will shade it as favourites for the whole competition.

“With it being a two-legged semi-final it kind of changes the focus slightly – how do you approach the first leg? Being a home tie in the first leg, do you go all-out attack or play a bit more conservative? There’s load of things to consider but we’re all excited and looking forward to it. We’ll be pulling out all the stops to make sure we get to the final.”

Linlithgow avoided a war of the Roses with East Super League rivals and current league champions Bonnyrigg drawn out in the first semi-final against West top-flight leaders Glenafton. Robbie Horn’s men will travel to Loch Park in New Cumnock, Ayrshire for the first leg on April 15.

“I think they are favourites,” said Horn. “If you look from the point of view that west is stronger than east, then we’ll be slight underdogs. But we showed in the last round against Kirkintilloch that we’re a good side and we can compete against the west teams. It’s one we are really looking forward to and I actually know the manager Craig McEwan quite well. We played together in Scotland youth teams and we’ve kept in contact since we both got into management. It’s just a pity we won’t be coming up against eachother in the final.”