A HAWICK United player is facing a ban of up to five years after he was sent off for spitting in the face of an opponent, writes Kenny Paterson.
Rio Rashrash was shown a red card by referee Craig Martin after the unsavoury touchline incident involving Stow substitute and assistant manager Fraser Riddell in their sides’ Border Amateur League clash last Saturday.
The centre-half’s case will be referred to Hampden by the Border Amateur Football Association, whose rules state that spitting carries a maximum suspension of five years.
The incident provides another disciplinary headache for Hawick United to deal with. Last season saw Paul Cooper shown the red card six times in one match by referee Andy Lyon and receive a two-year ban.
David Strathdee was suspended for 10 weeks earlier this campaign, while three United players were sent off against Chirnside Colts, along with manager George Shepherd, earlier this month.
Shepherd said: “Our discipline is not 100 per cent but we have a lot of players in their first year of amateur football and they have to learn.
“I have put a report in about the previous week’s game (versus Chirnside Colts) as we had one player sent off for swearing who was then called back on to the pitch and a different player was sent off. If the referee is not sure who swore then he cannot send someone off.”
On the Rashrash red card, the manager added: “It was on the other side of the pitch from us, but I believe our player spat at an opponent.
“I have not spoken to the player yet, so don’t know what happened or what was said. But it is shocking and he could get a big ban.”
Meanwhile, in the East of Scotland league, the countdown is on.
Selkirk are running out of fixtures in their bid to get points on the board in the Premier Division.
The Souters have a real fight on their hands and, talking ahead of his side’s home clash with Edinburgh City on Saturday, manager Bryan Templeton told The Southern: “We are not getting the bounce of the ball in games at the moment and everything just seems to be going against us. But it is no good feeling sorry for ourselves. We will just have to start making our own luck.”
Selkirk have Paul Hossack out through injury, but Jason Cockburn is expected to make a return.
Also in the Premier Division, Vale of Leithen travel to Edinburgh to take on Civil Service Strollers.
Kelso United visit Recreation Park to tackle Ormiston on First Division business and boss Prof Blaikie told us: “No doubt Ormiston will want to prove themselves, but so do we and I think we are capable of doing this.”
Paul Dumma and Sean Angus return to the Kelso squad.
Having made an exit from the East of Scotland League Cup at the hands of Leith Athletic, Peebles Rovers get an early opportunity to turn the tables, facing the capital outfit at Whitestone Park.
Gala Fairydean, who have high hopes of finishing in the top three in the First Division table, host Easthouses Lily at Netherdale, while Hawick Royal Albert are at home to Tynecastle in the first round of the East of Scotland League Cup.
Hawick have Malcolm Cooper suspended, while Sean Owens and Alan Campbell make a return.