Fife Cup v Raith Rovers
DUNFERMLINE 4 RAITH ROVERS 1 Date: 06/05/03
Fixture: Fife Cup Final
Attendance: 838, Kick Off: 19:30
Referee: Colin Brown, Weather: Cool, rain heavy at times 11C
Dunfermline fielded a strong team for the Fife Cup Final at East End Park. From the side that lost to Celtic only Gary Dempsey was missing as Gus MacPherson came into the starting line up.
Raith kicked off towards the sizeable crowd in the Norrie McCathie Stand but it was Dunfermline from the start. It really looked like it was only a matter of time before the opening goal would be scored at the far end.
Sean Kilgannon and Stevie Crawford exchanged passes down the left in the 6th minute but Raith managed to settle for a corner. Three minutes later Kilgannon accepted a Barry Nicholson cross from the right and thumped a shot off the left goalpost.
By the twelfth minute Brewster sent Crawford through on the break but his shot went straight to the silver shirt Sweeney in the Raith goal. Right away the Pars returned the kick out up the park and Craig BREWSTER ran on to the ball to slot home from 18 yards as the Raith defence stood and watched.
Valdes got over a good ball from the right after 15 minutes and the SPL club were fortunate that Gus MacPherson`s booted clearance rebounded off Pauleski and past the post for a corner.
The Raith keeper was back in action five minutes later when David Grondin`s cross developed into a shot at goal. Then Gary Mason had a go after Brewster had laid the chance off to him.
Jason Dair`s cross from the right in the 23rd minute was well held by Sweeney off Brewster`s header. Then five minutes later Crawford lofted over a similar cross from the right which Brewster nodded down for NICHOLSON who made no mistake with a header from six yards.
Another five minutes past and another Pars goal. This time Kilgannon swung over another of his trademark balls from the left and CRAWFORD rose to head in at the near post.
The rain came pouring down and the Cup Final was really over as a contest. Three nil at half time the Pars came out looking for more after the interval.
A Brewster shot from the edge of the box went over the crossbar, a Kigannon cross was blasted with similasr result from Nicholson and Crawford was denied by the Raith keeper after Brewster had headed a Kilgannon cross to him.
Brewster converted a Nicholson cross from the right into a fine shot and quickly another Nicholson ball from the right flank picked out Brewster. He headed down more ammunition for Crawford but Raith defence did well to close out the Scotland front man as he prepared to pull the trigger.
The Pars was due a goal and it dully came in the 63rd minute when a simple break up the right by Crawford provided a ball that BREWSTER slipped inside the right goalpost with his right foot.
The Rovers did not capitulate and substitute Shields pulled a goal back two minutes later to make it 4-1. That however was the end of the goals and the game died a bit after that.
Gary Mason had a shot after the Pars had been all over the Raith penalty box and young Patrick Clark came on and tried hard to add a fifth.
In the end it was a comfortable victory which will hopefully boost the strikers confidence for the Saturday meeting with the Dark Blues of Dundee.
At the end Stevie Crawford picked up the Fife Cup to the delight of the home fans whose appetite for silverware will have to be satisfied at least for another season.