Saturday November 3, 2012

William Hill Scottish Cup round 3

Airdrie United

2-2

Griffin 28
Thomson 78 og

Raith Rovers

Mensing 13
Spence 90

An injury-time equaliser from Greig Spence denied Airdrie victory in this William Hill Scottish Cup Third Round tie.

The former Celtic striker netted in the second minute of injury-time at New Broomfield on Saturday to earn ten-man Raith Rovers another bite of the cherry.

Airdrie made three changes to the team which started the thrilling 4-3 victory over Dumbarton at The Rock last Saturday.

Michael Hart, Gavin Griffin and Jamie Bain were included at the expense of David Lilley (injured), Marc Warren and midfielder Jack Boyle.

Referee Stephen Finnie made a noticeable impression by booking two Diamonds players, Gregor Buchanan and Kieron Stallard, in the opening eight minutes.

Raith made an impact of their own five minutes later when they took the lead. Brian Graham, who had headed wide moments earlier, nodded the ball down from Spence's cross for Simon Mensing to smash past keeper Kenny Arthur.

However, Airdrie equalised in the 28th minute. Determined play resulted in Bain hooking the ball over his shoulder for Griffin to volley low into the corner of the net.

In the 34th minute, Jimmy Boyle's men carved out a good opportunity with striker Paul Di Giacomo nodding Hart's cross just over the bar.

Raith's hopes of notching up a positive result suffered a blow early in the second half when Graham was red-carded for an apparent elbow on Stallard.

But had it not been for Arthur, Spence would have made it 2-1 when he was played clean through by Dougie Hill. Fortunately for Airdrie, the keeper made a good save.

The Diamonds thought they had pinched it in the 77th minute when Jason Thomson guided Hart's back-post cross into his own net.

But Raith, who struck the post through Allan Walker late-on, salvaged a draw when Spence slid in to convert substitute Grant Anderson's low cross.

There was no time left for the Diamonds who let a glorious opportunity slip through their fingers.

Both teams will square-off again at Stark's Park on Tuesday, November 13. Kick-off is at 7.45pm.

Colin Paterson at New Broomfield.

Photographs © Robert Dalzell. Click to view full size.

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