Local football: Six-shooting Salters stop Strollers

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AMATEUR sides Civil Service Strollers and Salters Athletic produced a topsy-turvy encounter with the latter prevailing 6-3 in the second round of the Anderson Cup at the Gyle.

Despite taking an early lead, the Midlothian-based outfit had to come from behind after Strollers fought back to edge in front at the break.

The match was barely two minutes old when Salters’ David Jamieson’s threaded pass found Paul Milligan free inside the area and the striker powered an unstoppable shot into the top corner of the net.

However, the home side battled back as Ross Gunn weaved himself down the left-wing before delivering a cross to the centre of the six-yard box where Andrew Garrett turned the ball in from close range after 25 minutes.

Ten minutes later, Strollers moved ahead with a goal reminiscent of their first, William Wells this time doing the work down the left and crossing for Steven Tierney to prod home.

Salters’ hopes of a second-half comeback appeared in tatters as Mark James was shown a straight red card for foul and abusive language just minutes after the restart.

However, the loss of James appeared to energise the visitors and they were back on level terms when Kevin McLaughlin found space a couple of yards out to score after a cross from the left.

Strollers’ Darren Barnett then struck the inside of the right post before the ten-men of Salters edged in front. A surging run and inviting cross off the left boot of Jamieson was converted at the back post by Milligan who earned his second goal of the afternoon.

Strollers’ crisp passing and movement suddenly deserted them and they conceded a fourth after 65 minutes. With the Strollers defence exposed, Chris Robertson approached the penalty box at pace before sending an effort which Strollers’ goalkeeper Darren Gunn could only fingertip into the back of the net.

Four became five shortly after when Milligan’s subtle pass put Lewis McAndrew in the clear and he rattled the ball across goal and into the far corner of the net. The goal of the game arrived 15 minutes from time and it was none more than Salters’ Jamieson deserved. The left-sided player caught Gunn napping in the Strollers’ goal and his audacious effort from the touchline 30 yards from goal looped into the far corner of the net much to the surprise of everyone in attendance.

A shell-shocked Strollers side did manage a third goal of their own when Ross Gunn curled in a free-kick from outside the area but it proved to be merely a consolation.

Salters’ coach John Meikle, said: “The performance was absolutely fantastic.”

Civil Service Strollers: Darren Gunn, Stuart Bain, Jules Cattanach, Ryan Cairncross, Steven Tierney, Lyall Menzies, William Wells, Ross Gunn, Alistair Ogilvie, Andrew Garrett, Darren Barnett, Callum Weir, Neil Colthart.

Salters Athletic: Calum Leslie, Richard McNeill, Callum McGechy, David Knox, Stephen Crawford, Kevin McLaughlin, Mark James, Lewis McAndrew, Chris Robertson, Paul Milligan, Chris Marshall, Stephen Houlihan, Andy Miller, David Louden, David Jamieson.