Raith Seniors Vs East Fife over 35’s
Raith seniors entertained East Fife in a pulsating derby match where the referee was the star of the show.
The sun was shinning and both teams gave their all right from kick off with East Fife missing a sitter when the striker was one on one with Houston but his shot was closer to Beveridge Park than it was to hitting the back of the net.
Raith missed several good chances to take the lead but failed to hit the target when they really should have made the keeper work for his afternoon food.
After 28 minutes Raith took the lead after the ball was passed in to Mark Anderson who turned his marker and fired a delightful curling shot from 25 yards in to the top right hand corner leaving the keeper with no chance at all.
Raith pilled forward and East Fife were struggling to cope with Raith with the East Fife keeper Arnott pulling out 3 top class saves and was saved by the post and the bar as well.
40 minutes East Fife ball was played in to the box and John Harrow was apparently pushed from behind claimed the referee but he was the only one that seemed to have noticed the foul. A very soft penalty but Harrow stepped up and fired home. First important decision by the ref that started to change the game
Raith 1-1 East Fife
Second half started off the same as the first half with both teams pilling forward looking to take the lead but once again East Fife missed several chances to take the lead and once again with a fantastic opportunity but the shot was better on the rugby field than football but East Fife weren’t the only ones guilty of missing good chances as Raith did their best to match the finishing by East Fife.
On 64 mins East fife broke down the right and the ball came across the middle and Darren Anderson fired a wonderful strike home to put East Fife in the lead.
Raith didn’t lie down to this and within 5 minutes were level after a wonderful 18 yard shot from captain Bathgate who fired in to the top corner.
After 75 minutes, Gemmell was put one on one with the keeper only to be pulled down by the last man just as Gemmell was about to shoot, obvious red card but the referee only deemed it as a yellow and the defender stayed on the park to the annoyance of the Raith Seniors management team.
Up step the referee once again to try and steal the show and he did with 2 minutes left on the clock as the East Fife striker hit a volley from 16 yards out and strike Allan Anderson hand that was down at his side and he didn’t move, a very harsh penalty but the ref pointed to the spot.
Up stepped Munro to fire in to the bottom left corner past the diving Houston who did get it a hand to it.
A bitter blow for Raith but they didn’t lie down and substitute Harvey and Mitchell combined down the right with the latter cutting the ball back to Harvey, his shot beat the keeper but was punched off the line by the East Fife defender. The ref pointed to the spot but no action was taken against the defender on the line.
Everyone expected Harvey to step up for the spot however he handed the ball over to Willie Bathgate. He took the penalty but the keeper pulled out a wonderful save.
There was no further action in the match and East Fife won by 3-2.
Both teams deserved something out the match but crucial decisions by the referee and crucial times changed the game. East Fife finished the match with 11 men and really should have had 2 players sent off.
Raith will move on from this match and will look to get back to winning ways on Sunday 17thFebruary 2019, when the entertain the their bitter rivals Dunfermline at Starks Park.