Hawick Royal Albert0
Gala Fairydean Rovers5
Friday evening’s Image Printers Cup tie was a memorable affair, however it was perhaps memorable for the wrong reasons.
Little entertaining football was conjured up, but there was plenty of everything else.
Hawick had two players red-carded as well as having their manager dismissed from the side line.
There was a sea of bookings, waves of drama and, as far as Gala Fairydean Rovers were concerned – a flood of goals.
Although having their backs to the wall for good periods of the first half, Fairydean Rovers emerged worthy winners and, giving his thoughts on the game, Gala manager Steven Noble told The Southern: “We expected Hawick to come out all guns blazing at the start and they did just that.
“However, we were prepared for this so we sat back and defended well and despite their possession, Hawick didn’t create many chances.
“We then hit them with a breakaway goal and after this, took control of the game.”
With a big crowd in attendance, the Albert came out firing on all cylinders. Moving the ball about well, the home side had Gala pinned back with a string of attacks, but, apart from a couple of missed chances for Declan Hogg and Nicky Cairns, were not looking like scoring.
With 21 minutes gone, the deadlock was broken by Rovers with a goal which was completely against the run of play.
On breaking down the right, Jamie Gibson whipped a cross over the face of the goalmouth, which was clinically struck away by Des Sutherland.
Gala then sent the Albert reeling by snatching a second when Craig McBride unleashed a shot that zipped past diving Hawick keeper Dean Fry.
Within seconds of this, Hawick were reduced to 10 men when Andy Williamson was sent off for foul language.
In the 56th minute the Albert fell further behind when Gibson was brought down in the box by Paul Brown. Referee Doig awarded a penalty, as well as dismissing Brown, and Gibson tucked away the spot kick.
Not long after this, Hawick’s night darkened even further when manager Graeme Chadwick, who had been spoken to on a couple of occasions, was sent into the stand for making remarks towards the Gala dugout.
Callum Jardine and Stuart Noble put the final nail in Hawick’s coffin by adding a goal apiece.