CHIRNSIDE UNITED 0
GALA ROVERS 1
Beveridge Cup final
Gala Rovers player/manager Steven Noble paid tribute to Ryan Grant after he notched a late winner to claim the Beveridge Cup at Lauder, writes Che Ross.
A flowing move two minutes from time saw Grant score from close range to allow Gala to pick up silverware for the first time in three years.
Noble said: “He’s a top lad and a top player. I’m really chuffed for him. He’s a key player for the team.
“Grant wasn’t playing his normal position, he was on the wing. He’s been at the club a few years now, so for him to score the winner in a cup final with us is great.
“It was a hard, difficult game, but in the end, it was a deserved victory.”
Top scorer Des Sutherland almost added to his impressive tally this season in the opening minutes of the first half when his free kick hit the crossbar.
It was evenly matched before the break, with Chirnside’s Christopher Young in particular showing some impressive touches.
But Rovers were in charge from the start of the second period to restrict the Berwickshire side to a few shots at goal.
United’s goalkeeper Martin Todd managed to keep the game goalless, saving an early shot from Grant and tipping Andrew Hardie’s free kick effort over the bar.
Todd then saved his team again three minutes from time with a magnificent save from Stuart Noble’s blasted strike.
After Grant’s late score, Chirnside produced some pressure, only for Rovers keeper Michael Fenton to save a shot and Gala held on to win the match.
The Beveridge Cup triumph makes up for Gala’s Border Cup final defeat earlier this year.
The Netherdale club now look destined for a league and cup double, requiring one win from their final seven Division A games. They played Greenlaw on Tuesday night – check The Southern’s website for the match report.
But Noble was not getting ahead of himself.
The boss added: “The team is full of hard workers. The key now is not to get too excited and take each game as it comes.”
Gala are grateful to Buccleuch Cleaners of Galashiels for their ongoing sponsorship.
Gala Rovers: M. Fenton, S. Mackenzie, S. Noble, S. Greene, A. Nicol, R. Grant, K. Collins, A. Hardie, C. Jardine, D. Sutherland, S. Noble. Subs: C. Gow, C. Middlemiss, B. Noble, G. Nicol, C. Mackenzie.