Rovers duo retire on a high with Waddell Cup win

Coach Steven Noble paid tribute to retiring duo Kevin Matheson and Shane Greene as Gala Rovers beat Greenlaw 3-0 in the Waddell Cup final.

And Noble also hopes to convince Des Sutherland – who scored 73 goals this season – to continue his playing career, despite indicating he wishes to step into refereeing.

Gala Rovers, this year's winner's of the Waddle Cup played against Greenlaw at Greenlaw with the score 3-0.

Gala Rovers, this year's winner's of the Waddle Cup played against Greenlaw at Greenlaw with the score 3-0.

The win on Tuesday night completed one of Rovers’ most successful seasons, having already secured the Division A title and Beveridge Cup.

Noble said: “Shane and Kev have been two of the best players ever to have played for the Rovers.

“They have been great ambassadors.

“They have been professional amateur players in the way they train and play.

Gala Rovers lift this year's Waddle Cup played against Greenlaw at Greenlaw with the score 3-0.

Gala Rovers lift this year's Waddle Cup played against Greenlaw at Greenlaw with the score 3-0.

“Des thinks he is going to take up the refereeing, but I think we will leave that to a Sunday morning.

“You saw today that he is a top player. I would not be surprised if he beats 73 goals next season.”

As for the future of the club, Rovers could have played their last game in the Border Amateur League, with an amalgamation with Gala Fairydean still being negotiated.

A meeting on Monday saw the Dean (as a new Gala Fairydean Rovers side) – along with Vale of Leithen and Selkirk – indicate they wish to step up into a new Lowland League.

And that could mean a second Gala Fairydean Rovers team jumping into the East of Scotland League.

Noble said: “There have been a lot of positive discussions with the Fairydean and potentially a lot of that is going to happen.”

The cup final, played at Happer Park, was not without its controversy after Greenlaw player/manager Lawrie Dunn was sent off for a second booking for a soft-looking foul on Sutherland, with Andy Hardie scoring the resultant penalty.

Just a minute later, the home support were incensed as whistler Raymond Hume failed to award a spot kick for a foul on Jake Galbraith, with Greenlaw also claiming that Greene should have been sent off following a confrontation with William Smillie.

But the tie was over on the hour when Sutherland struck and a fine shot from the striker four minutes from time meant the cup was heading back to Netherdale for the first time in 10 years.

Full match report at www.thesouthernreporter.co.uk