Berwick Rangers' January 1 fixture called off

New Year’s Day’s planned game between Berwick Rangers and Bonnyrigg Rose has been called off.

By Ralph Mellon
Wednesday, 29th December 2021, 2:14 pm
Updated Wednesday, 29th December 2021, 2:58 pm
David Ferguson (partially hidden) levels from close range for Berwick Rangers to make the score 2-2 against Gala Fairyden Rovers on Boxing Day (picture by Alan Bell)
David Ferguson (partially hidden) levels from close range for Berwick Rangers to make the score 2-2 against Gala Fairyden Rovers on Boxing Day (picture by Alan Bell)

Stuart Malcolm’s side were due to meet the Lowland League leaders at Shielfield on Saturday, with both sides fresh from Boxing Day victories.

However, it was announced on Tuesday evening that the game had been postponed for medical reasons.

The Wee Rangers’ management had effectively set a challenge to the squad of taking points from the top club after their December 26 win over Gala Fairydean Rovers served up a large helping of confidence.

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Berwick conceded twice in the opening quarter of an hour against Neil Hastings’ men but took only 12 minutes or so to turn a 2-1 half-time deficit into a 4-2 victory for a third win on the spin.

Overcoming that poor start convinced them they had a chance against Rose – managed by ex-Shielfield gaffer Robbie Horn – as long as they did not start as slowly as they did against Gala.

Assistant Berwick boss Dean Shanks believes Bonnyrigg will win the league and they took another step towards it with their 2-1 Boxing Day victory at home to Caledonian Braves.

“Bonnyrigg are having a cracking season, absolutely, but we are showing a real desire to put teams to the sword when we are on top,” he said before the call-off.

Shanks added that Berwick are finding a way of playing as well as scoring goals, fulfilling their aspirations as a club.

“We are building something at Berwick and I think the supporters can see that,” he said. “Everybody is in it together, so we want to be up challenging there in the next couple of years and really pushing to get back into the league.”

Shanks said, however, Saturday’s first-half showing was not of the standard that gaffer Malcolm or himself would accept.

Goals from Arron Darge – direct from a corner kick – and Zander Murray put Gala 2-0 up on Saturday but Michael Travis’s 41st-minute header gave Berwick something to work with in the second half.

They raised their intensity after the break and took control of the game, said Shanks, with David Ferguson levelling early on, Alex Harris converting a 52nd-minute penalty and Graham Taylor scoring with a deflected looping drive to make the turnaround complete.