Date : 29th April 2023

Opposition :  Dalkeith Thistle

Venue : Away

Scorers : Regan Graham, Own Goal

Booked : Craig Heath, Evan Smith

Sent Off : None

Attendance : 42

Referee : David Gallagher



Team Lineup :

Niall Frampton
Joao Vieira
Ctaig Heath
Evan Smith
Rhys Dixon
Jay Atkinson
Drew Cummings
Jack Forster
Regan Graham
Craig Bell
Jack Cummings

Subs :

Adam Deans on for Jay Atkinson 75 mins
Leighton Robertson (trialist) on for Craig Bell 87 mins


Match Report :

Against a rejigged Tweedmouth combination, promotion chasing Dalkeith Thistle collected three vital but hard earned points from a game which could neatly be divided into three segments. An evenly balanced first half from which the home side were a little fortunate to take a one goal advantage was followed by 25 minutes when they did most of the pressing. The final stage saw the visitors score twice either side of giving away a soft third goal.

As Thistle looked for a good start, Evan Smith and Rhys Dixon conceded corners in similar fashion making sure the ball went out of play with strong, high kicks, the second shortly after Kyle Brockie advanced 40 yards through the middle.

Either side of this run, Rangers created two good chances which ended in much the same way. Smith picked out Jay Atkinson to lay the ball back to Craig Bell but he twisted it outside the post. Then the Cummings brothers worked together to set up Regan Graham who sent the ball beyond the other upright.

Dylan Greig also shot past the post after shrugging off a trio of attempted tackles leaving the Kings Park side requiring a set piece from which to take the lead. Ronan Clelland lunged to get his foot to Darren Leslie’s free kick and pass on to Cameron Leslie for a 32nd minute goal.

Rangers’ first corner came a minute later. Before half time, taking Joao Vieira’s pass, Drew Cummings hit the post from 20 yards whilst keeper Aaron Jones needed both hands to punch clear a tricky lobbed ball from Graham.

The second period commenced with more corners for the Jags. Off one of them, Michael Lennie’s header flashed inches past the post. Drew Cummings was the main man in a rare Rangers’ raid during this point in proceedings but the whistle went for offside even before Atkinson put the ball into the net.

Further Dalkeith opportunities did not go the way they would have hoped. Greig chipped over the bar at the end of another strong run and Jordan Mackie was also unsuccessful until sub Josh Davidson celebrated his entry into the fray just three minutes earlier with the second home goal exactly half an hour after the first.

Quarter of an hour later, Tweedmouth reduced the margin. Adam Deans, on up front for Atkinson suffering leg pain, won the contest for a high ball to head it on to Jack Cummings. He played it forward to Bell and though Jones managed to save his shot, Graham was on hand to take the second chance.

The unease in Dalkeith’s ranks was palpable with Davidson cautioned for time wasting. But, with a possible draw within Rangers’ grasp, Davidson accepted their generosity with a second goal when keeper Niall Frampton’s bid to set Drew Cummings away from deep inside the away half backfired.

Three-one would have been harsh so it was fitting that Tweedmouth had the final word. Three minutes into stoppage time, Graham struck again but, as the ball went into the net off the back of Stephen Woods, the referee credited it as an own goal.

Many good points about Rangers’ display against a physically bigger team. They will be looking for something similar and more when they head north again this Tuesday ( May 2nd ) to play Edinburgh South at Paties Road Stadium in Colinton. Kick off 7:15 p.m.