Berwick Rangers 1-1 Montrose

Berwick and Montrose earned a share of the spoils in this re-arranged fixture which was played in driving rain and a strong wind throughout.

By Keith Hamblin
Thursday, 21st November 2013, 8:30 am

The conditions had a bearing on the game with both sides struggling to control the ball.

Graham Webster fired Montrose in front midway through the first half with Berwick skipper Lee Currie equalising with an unstoppable wind-assisted shot midway through the second.

The game had been postponed from the previous Tuesday because of a power failure which cut the electricity supply to the stadium.

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Berwick went into the match without a win in their previous six games, having dropped from second top of the table to second bottom.

The point lifted them to eighth above Elgin at the final whistle.

Montrose knew that a win could lift them to just a point behind leaders East Stirling.

With the wind advantage David Gray tried a shot from distance for the visitors which slid past the post, but it was Terry Masson who had the first shot on target, a 25 yard strike which Paul Grant collected comfortably.

The deadlock was broken by Webster after 23 minutes when he swept home a first time shot from 20 yards after Scott Johnson broke down the right, cut inside and squared the ball to him just outside the box.

As Berwick tried to force their way back into the game, Darren Lavery headed wide from a Lee Currie corner, whilst Currie also flashed a free kick across the face of the goal.

Damien Gielty blasted over at the start of the second half as Berwick tried to use the wind to their advantage.

Ross Gray curled a left foot shot high and wide a wind-assisted Currie free kick from distance also narrowly missed the target.

Rangers finally equalised after 68 minutes when Currie fired home from 25 yards, but a minute later they had a scare when Webster shot across the face of the home goal and Johnson just failed to get a touch.

Right at the end Josh Morris cut the ball back for fellow substitute Kenny O’Brien whose shot was cleared off the line by defender Craig Bell.

Strong claims for a penalty were turned aside as the match ended in controversy.

Both manager described conditions as ‘horrendous,’ with Berwick boss Ian Little claiming it was “hats off to the players and the officials for seeing it through the 90 minutes.

“They are some of the worst conditions I have ever seen for a football match.”

But Little was left ruing his side’s luck at the end, claiming his side should have had a penalty in the last minute when full-back Craig Bell blocked Kenny O’Brien’s shot on the line.

“I think most people in the stadium thought it was a penalty,” he said.

But Montrose manager Stuart Garden said it was most definitely not a spot kick.

“Craig has the mark on his shirt where the ball hit him,” he said. “It was a tremendous block and one which definitely earned us a point.”

Berwick: Grant, Jacobs, Hoskins Dunlop Tulloch Gielty (O’Brien 81), Currie

Notman Dalziel (Morris 64), Lavery Gray

Subs:O’Brien Morris Janzcyk, Ronald Carse O’Connor

Bookings: Notman 89 dissent.

Montrose:McKenzie, McNally, Bell, Wilson, Wood, Masson, Gray (McIntosh 87),

McCord, Johnson, Deasley, Webster (Bonar 80).

Subs: Wood, Bonar, Sturrock, McIntosh

Bookings: Wood 82 foul;

Referee: George Salmond.

Attendance: 227