WEST LOTHIAN IBC enter the lions’ den at Blantyre today where they face the challenge of defeating a seemingly-invincible home team to clinch their place in the play-off final for the Premier League title.
Blantyre have only lost once at home over the past five seasons but this final match of the A Section campaign has become more of a one-off cup tie, raising hopes in the WL camp that current form may count for nothing.
Despite their strength in depth, WL will be the underdogs in the battle between two of the three joint-leaders – Midlothian are also in the mix – but the defending champions will be fired up by an ambition to make it four titles in a row.
A victory would do either team because of their shot-margin superiority over Midlothian. However, in the possible but unlikely event of a peel, the team from Dalkeith would steal the show if they won at home against relegation-zoned Coatbridge.
WL enter the fixture on the back of last weekend’s unconvincing ten-shot win over Bainfield at Livingston and do a slight re-shuffle that includes Paul Lynas returning for Blair Mackie.
Rink 1: Cameron Greer, Raymond Logan, Craig Moss, Calum Logan.
Rink 2: Richard Mark, Stuart Johnston, Jamie Gracie, Mark Allison.
Rink 3: Bryan Cooper, Dougie Mitchell, Paul O’Donnell, Neil Speirs.
Rink 4: Paul Lynas, Ian Drysdale, James Speirs, and Thomas Mann.
EAST LOTHIAN’S failure to make it six wins a row with their disappointing defeat at Falkirk last weekend has robbed the ‘garden county elite’ of going into today’s home match against Ardrossan with a chance of snatching the B Section honours.
“We are now four points off the pace so don’t pose a threat to Aberdeen anymore and it will rub salt into our wounds if the leaders slip up at Paisley and we win as we hope to do,” reflected spokesman Scott Kennedy.
EL will now look towards the Scottish Cup campaign that presents their next major challenge and hope that today’s league line-up can restore team morale.
Rink 1: Gary Muir, Andy Burt, Graham Robertson, Derek Oliver.
Rink 2: Ewan Fallen, Kieran Simants, Dougie Berwick, Billy Mellors.
Rink 3: Lessel Middler, Gary Darling, Stuart Thomson, Scott Kennedy.
Rink 4: Mark Johnston, Calum Darling, Andy Jeffrey, Jamie Higgins.