RAIN rather than snow is the threat to the East of Scotland action this weekend, as the King Cup is on the agenda, writes John Slorance.
Gala Fairydean, Hawick Royal Albert, Peebles Rovers and Vale of Leithen will be hoping to make it a regal occasion by progressing into the next round of the competition.
Fairydean are at home to Eyemouth United, a side that toppled them 3-1 at Netherdale 3G Arena in league business in their last outing.
Glancing ahead to the return clash, Gala assistant manager Jim McLean told TheSouthern: “We are very happy to get another go against Eyemouth as we have something to prove.
“In the last game we were on top for a spell and had them on the rack, but they weathered the storm and went on to get a win. We will be coming out to make up for that defeat.”
Gala have Marc Berry suspended, while Eyemouth are expected to be at full strength.
United boss Carl Hudson said: “The 3G surface is one which seems to suit our style of play and we will go there with some confidence of getting a result.”
Hawick Royal Albert face a mighty task as they tackle Premier Division leaders Spartans at Ainslie Park.
Albert coach Davie Aitken, who travels without Ryan Shepherd and Ronald Fleming, said: “Nobody will give us a chance against Spartans and quite rightly so, as they are a top side.
“All I can say is that we will try to keep the score down to a reasonable level. We can only do what we can do and there have been some big upsets in cup games recently, so who knows what might happen.”
Vale entertain First Division side Craigroyston at Victoria Park and boss Fraser Ogilvie told us: “We are in much need of a game due to matches being postponed, so will be a bit rusty and shall not be flying out of the traps.
“Although we have not been playing, the players have been training hard and our fitness is good.”
Peebles Rovers, whose squad has been injected with some new blood of late, tangle with Heriot-Watt University at Whitestone Park. Rovers are hoping to have Craig Edgar and John Manson free from injury.
Selkirk can leapfrog Borders rivals Duns in their First Division match at Yarrow Park.
The Souters are still without Barry Milven and Euan Pritchard, while Duns are missing Des Chisholm, but include new signings Grant Sharp, 18, and 17-year-old Regan Graham, both from Berwick, in their squad.
Davie Richardson is a doubt for Kelso United’s home First Division match with Ormiston.
Pick of the Border Amateur games is Tweeddale Rovers and Hawick Waverley’s clash for a place in the quarter-finals of the South Cup.