Bonnyrigg Rose targeting double after thrashing Spartans to reach cup final

Bonnyrigg Rose boss Robbie Horn has set his sights on claiming a league and cup double after they thrashed Lowland League rivals Spartans 4-1 at Ainslie Park last night to reach the South Challenge Cup final.

By Scott Thomson
Wednesday, 13th April 2022, 10:33 am
Natahn Hall celebrates one of his two goals against Spartans in the cup semi-final. Picture: Joe Gilhooley LRPS
Natahn Hall celebrates one of his two goals against Spartans in the cup semi-final. Picture: Joe Gilhooley LRPS

The newly-crowned Lowland League champions displayed the strength of their squad depth as Horn made five changes from Saturday’s starting eleven in the 2-2 draw in their title-presentation fixture with East Stirlingshire.

Competition for places is hotting up ahead of their two legged play-off with the still-to- be-crowned Highland League champions later this month.

Striker Kieran Hall came in to start and netted twice, while winger Bradley Barrett retained his place from the weekend and also chipped in with a double. Jamie Dishington netted a fine solo effort of his own late on to deny Rose a clean sheet.

Bonnyrigg's Nathan Evans on the attack against Spartans at New Dundas Park. Picture: Joe Gilhooley LRPS

“I thought we controlled the first half, we got an early which helped settle us down, but then we let them back in it at the start of the second half; we made a couple of wee mistakes which could have been punished,” said Horn. “They hit the post twice and we got a wee break from that.

“I always felt we could pick up and go another gear, and once we got through that wee spell we took control of it again and ran out comfortable winners. I was disappointed we lost a goal at the end, it took a wee bit of a shine off it but if you told me before the game that we’d win 4-1, I would’ve been delighted. Spartans are a good side but I thought we won the game comfortably.

“We changed the team about a wee bit again and kept everybody fresh, and we had some really good performances. Everyone is competing for places. I was a wee bit disappointed with the way we played on Saturday, and I think as a squad they were disappointed that they didn’t play to the level we can on what was a big day for the club as well getting presented with the trophy.

“It was important we got a wee bit of a reaction, and I think we did. It was a big game [for us]; a semi-final and we want to win everything.

"We want to win this competition, it’s massive – it really is in effect like the old Scottish Junior Cup with the teams that are in it. It could potentially be Auchinleck [Talbot] or Sauchie in the final and it will be a massive game.

“We’ve had a difficult games to get this stage, I am delighted to be in the final. People will maybe say it’s a distraction from the play-offs but for me, it keeps everybody hungry and on their toes.”

Rose travel west to take on East Kilbride in their final league game of the season on Saturday and Horn is eager for his side to keep their foot on the gas.

He added: “We will go as strong as we can on Saturday. We want to keep winning and trying to keep the momentum going into the games coming up.

"We can’t take our foot off the gas – it’s really difficult to drop your standards and then try and go again, so we’ve just got to keep going full tilt into the playoffs.

“Everyone wants to play but I’ve got to give other people opportunities and the chance to get fit. It’s great that we’ve got such good competition for places.”

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