Pre Season Tour v Lewis Harris Select
LEWIS HARRIS SELECT 1 DUNFERMLINE 8: Date: 11/07/03
Attendance: 1800 Kick Off: 19:15
Referee: Norman McCaskill (Stornoway)
Weather: 12c. Breezy with dark clouds overhead!
For Lewis and Harris, described in the Tourist brochures as "the Long Island", the fixture against Dunfermline was the "the Football event of the Year". Whether or not Jimmy Calderwood had clocked this or not is unknown but he did send out his strongest possible team to play against the best players drawn from the ten clubs on the Island.
Following on the previous evening’s 10 nil trouncing of the Island’s U23 team there was no great expectations for the senior fixture. Dunfermline started attacking as everyone expected, a Craig Brewster header was well blocked and a Barry Nicholson corner was struck high over the crossbar and out of the ground by Derek Young.
When Scott Wilson failed to clear a cross ball into the box in the tenth minute, Dave McMILLAN fired in a shot which took a deflection and stunned Derek Stillie as he watched it land in the bottom left of the goals.
The Stornoway crowd, estimated at around 1800, were delighted with the early lead but through their chuckles they fully understood that the lead was temporary. The Pars tried very hard for the equaliser with Derek Young and Brewster being particularly prominent in attack. When Gary Mason’s cross found the head of Lee Bullen, keeper Alec Wright made a fine save.
The equaliser took only five minutes to materialise as Brewster prodded a fine pass into the penalty box for his partner Stevie CRAWFORD to back flick into the net from 8 yards.
Next, Lee Bullen had a strong run from halfway to the right byeline from which he crossed for Derek Young whose shot was just wide. Derek was next involved with a break down the left that produced another chance for Crawford but this time Norrie McDonald cleared off the line and the keeper dived on the ball before Barry Nicholson could convert it.
In the 23rd minute a Bullen cross come shot was tipped out for a corner and from that Derek Young shot but could only earn another corner. There were a series of corners as the Pars piled on the pressure but it was from a fairly simple pass from Crawford to BREWSTER on the edge of the box that the latter chipped over the keeper to put the Pars ahead.
The Long Islanders attempted a quick reply with Ally Mackay testing Stillie who cut out a cross which would have earned the home side an equaliser. Before long, Dunfermline were yet again camped in the opposition half and on 33 minutes BREWSTER turned his defender on the edge of the box to send a rightfooted low drive into the bottom right.
Gary Mason had a shot from 20 yards which was just right of target and then just before half time he crossed for Brewster to tee up Derek Young but the keeper just beat the former Don to the ball.
Two minutes into the second half David Grondin travelled all the way down the left to cross from the edge of the box and set up a BREWSTER hat-trick with a header from just 6 yards. Next minute Brewster sent Nicholson deep into the right side of the opposition penalty box and his shot dropped off the crossbar to Stevie CRAWFORD who rattled in off the keepers right hand post from only 8 yards out.
Our Scotland striker then scored another two goals within eight minutes. Darren Young played a simple ball to CRAWFORD who scored from the angle of the penalty box on the right. Then in the 56th minute another Grondin run up the left picked out CRAWFORD on his own in the centre of the penalty box. He drew the keeper and slotted away to make it 7 – 1.
Derek Stillie was not entirely unemployed. He skied a pass back from which Kevin Murray should have scored but didn’t. Then in the 59th minute Clachnacuddin player Gordon Morrison forced the Dunfermline keeper to tip the ball over his crossbar. Jason Dair who had come on for Derek Young in the 61st minute tried a smash at goal but was just wide. Darren Young sent Bullen up the right on a strong run but the keeper cut out his cross. Young had a 35 yard lob which was palmed over the bar and Scott Wilson headed just over from the corner.
Dunfermline continued to put the Islander’s under pressure with Dair and Crawford combining to get themselves into promising positions. On two or three occasions Jason was being pleaded with to "hit it" but it took until two minutes from time the transfer-listed player to complete the scoring after work from Bullen on the right produced a cutback for DAIR to strike home from 10 yards out.
So ended the Hebridean experience. Plenty of goals, and a truly sporting encounter with the Island’s two Select teams.
For the travelling support of a dozen the hospitality was immense and the weather, although not exactly summer, did manage to keep the midges away and the only bite they enjoyed was from the Dunfermline attack which had produced no fewer than 18 goals in two nights.