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Peterhead 2 Annan Athletic 0

Mon 17 Dec 2012

Man of the match - David Cox Man of the match - David Cox

There was a twenty minute delay to the kick off as the bus carrying players to the match broke down, the unusual thing was it was the home team that was affected, the Glasgow based Peterhead players became stranded south of Stonehaven and alternative transport was arranged. So it was a relived Jim McInally that was able to send out an unchanged side for only the second time this season, Ryan McCann and Bryan Deasley being joined on the bench by Stephen Maquire and Robbie Winters.

It was a clod day at Balmoor and no sign of the fierce storm that had lashed the town the night before, however whether it was the delay in arriving or the weather Peterhead started the game poorly. Annan had the best chance to open the scoring when failure to clear the line’s effectively, meant that Annan Attacker Andrew Donnelly was one on one with Graeme Smith, fortunately for the Blue Toon, he slipped his effort just past the post.

This seemed to spark a response from Peterhead and Galabankies goalkeeper Alex Mitchell needed to be alert after 16 minutes to beat away Steven Noble's goal bound effort. Scott McLaughlin had sight of goal seven minutes later, but was unable to hit the target with a curling strike from the edge of the area. However both teams were cancelling each other out to great effect and although Peterhead were enjoying greater possession, no real clear chances were being created.

The second half started with no changes to either team, but Peterhead looked to have more purposes about them, former Annan player David Cox being in the thick of the action and he was to have the first chance of the second half, after 52 minutes, when under pressure from the Annan defence he fired over the bar from close range.

Peterhead finally made the breakthrough after the ball was played out to Jamie Redman and his teasing cross was perfectly placed between the Annan Keeper and defence, who both delayed coming for the ball and Rory McAllister slid in at the back post to force the ball over the line, for the striker’s seventh league goal of the season.

Peterhead were now on top and looked to get the killer second goal, a long ball over the Annan defence saw Martin Bavidge power past his marker into the box, before sidestepping back inside him to get onto his favoured foot and the sharp shot forced a great save down low by the keeper. It was Stephen Nobles turn next to have a shot saved after good work from David Cox saw him drawing the Annan defence and slipping the ball into Stig’s path.

Rory McAllister almost doubled his tally in the game, hitting the post from six yards in the 79th minute. However it only took another five minutes for the Blue Toon to double theirs when Martin Bavidge found the top corner, after Good work on the right hand side with Noble and Cox, the ball was played into Bavidge’s feet and he superbly spun his marker, firing past the keeper from 14 yards.

Jim McInally was delighted with the teams second half showing, “ We deserved the win today, after getting the goals we played with a freedom and quality and saw the game out really well, we have battled and played well against Elgin and Berwick, the players understand that you have to earn the right to play with freedom, winning the tackles and the second balls. However you can see the belief is coming back into the side.”