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Alex Jack cup 2021/22


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1 minute ago, cowdenbeath said:

Should get a decent crowd playing it in Fife.

Always get lots of people from the other Fife clubs turning out for such games.

Looking forward to it.

Not much of note on TV either which should help... Livingston v Rangers at 12noon, but you could presumably watch that beforehand in a nearby hostelry or Kelty's social club.

There has only actually been 1 previous Alex Jack Cup Final since 2017, which was Musselburgh v Oakley in 2019... no tournament last season, and no Final in 2018 as both Bo'ness United and Haddington fielded ineligible players in their SF handing Camelon walkover.

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On 13/11/2021 at 22:50, HibeeJibee said:

Some novelty facts that have occurred to me about this fine choice of venue:

... this is the first time the Alex Jack Cup Final has ever been played in Fife (indeed first outside Lothians + Borders)

... this is the first time any EOS final has been held in Fife since Saturday 6th December 1902 when EOS Qualifying Cup between Cowdenbeath and Hearts of Beath was played at Lochgelly

... this is the furthest north an EOS final has ever been played

... this is the first-ever senior final ever held at Kelty

... this is Crossgates first-ever senior final

 

Judging by their website history Crossgates Primrose haven't won a final since 1957-58 around the time they had Jim Baxter playing for them:

https://www.crossgatesprimrosefc.com/club-history

...The Fife Cup was claimed again in 1955-56 with a 2-1 win over Newburgh, and the West Fife Cup in 1957-58 (a season that saw Crossgates reach three other finals). These two seasons sandwich the arrival at Humbug Park of one Jim Baxter, without doubt the greatest former “Rose” player. Discovered by Mr. Crossgates himself, Willie Butchart, Jim signed to the club in 1956-57 before joining Raith Rovers. Fame followed with Rangers and Scotland as well as a career in England.

By season 1960-61 Junior football was struggling in the Kingdom and the league was down to only 11 clubs. Primrose finished 8th but none the less folded at the end of the season. The reasons behind this are not known, the team itself did not fulfil all its fixtures and, if it had, could quite possibly have finished higher...

That's arguably a different club though:

...More than 20 years were to pass before the name of Crossgates Primrose was resurrected when, in 1982, as a juvenile side, the club was reformed. They re-joined the Fife Junior League a year later and returned to Humbug Park (which had been sold back to the Council by the Pars) for their first match on 13th August 1983 in a win over Dundonald Bluebell.

Crossgates best spell since returning was the late 1980’s with a 1988-89 East Coast Windows Cup Final defeat to St. Andrews United followed a season later with a third place finish in the league behind St. Andrews and Hill of Beath Hawthorns. The same season saw a Cowdenbeath Cup Final loss to Hill of Beath and semi-final appearances in both the Laidlaw Shield and League Cup

Since then, the Primrose have entered a lean time. 1994-95 saw a Kingdom Cup Final loss to Newburgh on penalties and Fife Cup semi-final appearances in 2000-01 & 2001-02 and a Cowdenbeath Cup semi also in 2001-02 are the last times the club have been at the business end of competitions....

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  • 2 weeks later...

Sunday 28th November 2021
FINAL:
Crossgates Primrose v Leith Athletic

(2pm at Kelty Hearts)

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First final of this season and a game of contrasts looks in store.

Leith Athletic are an old EOS side and hold a fine pedigree in this tournament having won it in 2009-10 then 4 times in a row from 2012-13 to 2015-16, more recently being losing finalist back in 2017-18. (In their previous guises as Manor Thistle and Edinburgh Athletic you can add 4 more titles and another final defeat). They played in the Scottish Cup once before where they came through 2 rounds before losing v Cumbernauld Colts in a replay. Countless other cup final appearances during the Leith era include 4 in EOS League Cup (2 wins); 2 wins in King Cup; and 1 loss in EOS Qualifying Cup. They've played First Division conference football for last 3 seasons - being unfortunate not to obtain promotion in abandoned 2019-20 season where they trailed LTHV and had worse record than Inverkeithing, and leading voided 2020-21 season with 100% record. Currently running 2nd, in recent weeks their form has dipped with heavy defeats to Haddington and Rosyth, loss to Edinburgh Utd and draw with Thornton.

Crossgates Primrose joined in the mass exodus from the East Juniors in 2017-18. They don't seem to have reached a cup final for over 25yrs or won any in over 60yrs. They have never reached the Scottish Cup. Their cup record since turning senior has been pretty forgettable excepting a King Cup SF appearance in the opening season. Having squeezed into the new Premier Division for 2019-20, they were flirting dangerously with relegation in that truncated campaign - then were actually occupying spot in drop zone when last season was canned. However different story this time around, where they sit pretty in 7th and have hoovered up points off those below them, as well as holding Linlithgow and Musselburgh to draws in the opening week in mid-July.

This is only the second Alex Jack Cup Final played on a current Scottish League ground (after Falkirk Stadium in 2010-11) and third on artificial turf (after Ainslie Park in 2012-13 and Riccarton in 2016-17).

At stake not only the title but a place in the coveted South, East & West of Scotland Cup-Winners' Shield. Hoping good crowd and great final.

Edited by HibeeJibee
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3 hours ago, parsforlife said:

I'll be there.

What sort of crowd are we expecting? Low hundreds?

You'd hope at least a few hundred IMO. Huge game for Crossgates and it's only over the hill. Leith don't have a big support but seem to be bringing youth team players and families through including on buses. If it's particularly chilly that might discourage some tbf (particularly neutrals).
 

On 29/10/2021 at 18:41, HibeeJibee said:

Bellshill Athletic v Drumchapel United
Neilston v Rutherglen Glencairn
St Cadocs v Harmony Row
Royal Albert v Vale of Clyde


Drumchapel, Rutherglen, St Cadocs will be favourites to reach SFs - though Neilston will be hopeful - while last tie looks fairly even.

With no round played this month it appears the West competition won't conclude until some way into the new year.

Drumchapel, Rutherglen and St Cadocs progressed to SFs today.

Royal Albert-Vale of Clyde seemingly isn't due until February 12th.

Edited by HibeeJibee
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25 minutes ago, HibeeJibee said:

You'd hope at least a few hundred IMO. Huge game for Crossgates and it's only over the hill. Leith don't have a big support but seem to be bringing youth team players and families through including on buses. If it's particularly chilly that might discourage some tbf (particularly neutrals).
 

Drumchapel, Rutherglen and St Cadocs progressed to SFs today.

Royal Albert-Vale of Clyde seemingly isn't due until February 12th.

It was Baltic here today resulting in the Haws game being off.

Probably even colder in Kelty it usually is.

Hopefully make it up for the game.

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6 minutes ago, parsforlife said:

😪

At least there's hope it might be slightly warmer when re-arranged.

There's that I suppose.

Odds of this happening - snowfall freezing an artificial pitch in November - must be annoyingly low. I can't ever remember the like of it. EOS website result database goes back to 2014, and can spot fewer than a handful of examples before the new year, with none before mid-December.

Due to Scottish Cup schedule the AJ final is almost invariably November and it's hardly ever been off on grass!

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1 hour ago, HibeeJibee said:

Overnight snowfall. Cup final off due to icing on the pitch.

Saw someone earlier in the week complaining on Twitter about it being played on an artificial pitch (and being so close to Crossgates). Thought that was a bit unfair as there would be more chance of it being on with the forecast weather, obviously not! Assume other grounds in the east would have been called off anyway?

The WOS equivalent still have their semis to play so...

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1 hour ago, Ginaro said:

Saw someone earlier in the week complaining on Twitter about it being played on an artificial pitch (and being so close to Crossgates). Thought that was a bit unfair as there would be more chance of it being on with the forecast weather, obviously not! Assume other grounds in the east would have been called off anyway?

The WOS equivalent still have their semis to play so...

I imagine when picking Kelty the EOS committee took in two sensible ways of thinking.

An artificial pitch for a game at the end of November.

Sadly that failed to prevent it being called off but I imagine a grass pitch would have suffered the same fate.

Playing the game in Fife with a Fife side involved would probably ensure a half decent crowd.

They done similar in 2019 when Musselburgh played Oakley at Nitten knowing they would get a good Midlothian turn out.

Leith are not known for big crowds so I doubt the game would have been much of a draw to attract a crowd in Edinburgh.

Edited by cowdenbeath
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1 hour ago, Ginaro said:

Saw someone earlier in the week complaining on Twitter about it being played on an artificial pitch (and being so close to Crossgates). Thought that was a bit unfair as there would be more chance of it being on with the forecast weather, obviously not! Assume other grounds in the east would have been called off anyway?

The WOS equivalent still have their semis to play so...

I didn't see the Tweet complaining about the venue being so close to Crossgates but would just like to make it clear that Leith Athletic had NO issues with the choice of venue.  New Central Park is a first class venue with excellent facilities for players & spectators alike.  Leith have played there twice in the past, once in a League fixture, once in a cup tie (pumped both times by the way although we were robbed in the League game!).  Kelty was an obvious choice if the game was to be played on Fife side & had say Ainslie Park been selected this side of the Bridge then the same "geographical" advantage could have been levelled in reverse (but I'm sure it wouldn't have been from my discussions with our counterparts at the Rose).  I suppose it would have been say "neutral" to maybe choose a West Lothian venue but as I say no need from a Leith point of view. The fact that it was just down the road from Crossgates made no difference to logistics for getting to the venue. Obviously Leith had arranged a bus but I know Crossgates had too (in fact I understand they had more than 1 arranged so their young teams could get to game too).  EoS cup finals are played on Sundays for a number of (good) reasons including maybe attracting a better crowd with fewer other games that day.  However, Sundays are becoming busier fixture-wise these days too with further demands on potential venues (e.g. SWFL fixtures). Speaking for Leith we'll just look forward to taking part in the showpiece game when it is re-arranged WHEREVER it is played & I'm pretty sure The Rose lads will be the same.

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Don't think anybody had an issue with the venue, the EoSFA and league are implicitly fair to me, we benefited last year given we had an easier trip up to Nitten, less convenient for Oakley, no argument on my part at all if we have to face Oakley at a neutral ground again it should be a Fife ground.

Crossgates benefit here at Leith's expense to some degree but all credit to Leith, no complaints and in fact here there's Leith guys saying they're happy with it here.

EoSFA are a great organisation for the clubs and try to take into account supporters as well, had my doubts when we moved over but all been eclipsed.  We are far better off in the EoSL and it's difficult to see a position happening where we'll play at a ground nearer to our opponents and then be asked to do the same if the same fixture were to require a neutral ground again a couple of years later, I'd expect some balance.

Want an example of this being idiocy then you'd only have to look back to us being allocated Rugby Park by the SJFA for both Scottish finals in the Juniors, RP just about has an Auchinleck postcode FFS, 20 minutes with yer bus pass!

Difficult to see the EoSFA being that thoughtless, disappointing today but faith in the EoSFA making this a success when it is played, I'll be there, up the Leithers!  (Best wishes to Crossgates as well mind).

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  • 3 weeks later...
On 27/11/2021 at 21:27, HibeeJibee said:

Drumchapel, Rutherglen and St Cadocs progressed to SFs today.

Royal Albert-Vale of Clyde seemingly isn't due until February 12th.

Nithsdale Wanderers 2-1 Abbey Vale

at QotS on Friday night in the Southern Alba Cup final.

Nithsdale are 6th in SOSL and were crushed 7-2 at home by Hurlford Utd in this season's South Challenge Cup - so EOSL and WOSL reps will fancy their chances.

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