Souters miss Dodds after accidental injury

Selkirk 2

Edinburgh University 3


KEVIN JANIAK reports from Yarrow Park

SELKIRK had an uphill battle on their hands after losing inspirational keeper John Dodds in the 28th minute of this cup tie.

Up till then, they had coped well with a period of pressure from the Students, as well as having a great chance saved when Jason Inglis connected well to Darryl Burdett’s corner.

An accidental knock of heads left the towering number one with a cut across the bridge of his nose which steadfastly refused to stop bleeding and needed stitching. Andy Hardie got the nod to go on in Dodds’ place, but although the diminutive midfielder insisted he was a star between the sticks, the considerably taller defender Euan Pritchard was told to wear the gloves.

The Souters kept the visitors in their own half for a while, but Uni went ahead in the 43rd minute.

David Oswald and Selkirk’s Jamie Higginbottom were tussling for the ball 35yds out when Pritchard’s defender’s instinct told him he should help out. Unfortunately, Oswald beat them both and passed the ball into the empty net.

Because of injuries to both keepers, there was an inordinate amount of time added on in the first half. Seven minutes into it, the Souters equalised – and it was a beauty.

Ryan McManus worked his way to the edge of the visitors’ box, jinked inside and blasted a superb right-footed shot into the net.

And that momentum continued into the second half, with David Battle dribbling to the byeline before cutting back for Jamie Gibson to shoot the home side into the lead.

Unfortunately, it didn’t last long. James Craigen’s shot was saved by Pritchard’s legs, but the rebound was perfect for the University man, who made no mistake with his second effort, making it 2-2.

Then, from a Mark Gair free kick, Michael Gray was allowed tons of space to bullet home the winner with his head.

Burdett then forced a good save from Uni keeper Mark Tait, and Andy Hardie’s free kick was just a smidgeon too high as Selkirk chased for the leveller, but they ran out of time.

Disappointed, but not despondent, Selkirk boss Bryan Templeton had seen enough from his side to be optimistic about their chances against Nairn this Saturday in the first round of the Scottish Cup.

“Losing John was a major factor in our loss, even though we went 2-1 up without him,” Templeton said.

“I can’t blame Euan for losing the goals, he is not a keeper and we had to protect him more and we didn’t do that, to be honest.

“Although, I do think that if Doddsy was there we would have won it.

“He should be all right for next week in the Scottish Cup as there didn’t seem to be any concussion. He’ll be more worried about losing his good looks.”

Templeton insisted there were a lot of positives to take from the match, topmost of which was the efforts of his man of the match.

He added: “Jason Inglis, for me, was outstanding today.

“He, and all the other boys will be playing for the jumper next week.”

Selkirk: J. Dodds (A. Hardie), L. Stephen (J. Witt), R. McManus, J. Higginbottom, E. Pritchard, J. Inglis, R. McManus, D. Burdett, J, Gibson, D. Battle and L. Hardie (B. Milven).