Match date: 25th September 2021 Kickoff: 2.30 pm

After the excitement of reaching the Second Round of the Scottish Cup last weekend it was back to the bread and butter of the League for Dunbar with a first ever visit from The Swifts formerly known as The Inverkeithing Hillfield Swifts, who were sitting nicely in sixth position before kick off and unbeaten in their last seven League games. Dunbar were short of players for various reasons and only named four substitutes for the game.

The game sprang to life right from the start with Dunbar going close after an Andy Jones cross was headed across goal by Dan Purves but a deflection took the ball away from the lurking Jamie Devlin. Greig Spence replied for the visitors with a high looping shot which was cleared off the Dunbar line with the keeper beaten.

Callum Deas tested Laing in the Dunbar goal from distance but the keeper was up for the challenge before Kieran Ingram headed a Darren Smith corner over the Swifts bar as both sides probed for an opening.

The deadlock was broken in the 23rd minute when Dunbar’s Andy Jones picked up a loose ball on the edge of the penalty box and fired an unstoppable dipping shot over the Swifts keeper high into the net and give Dunbar a deserved lead.

The visitors pushed on and Ryan Cowie wasted two good chances to equalise before Greig Spence forced Daniel Laing into another great save to maintain Dunbar’s slender lead. The Swifts frustrations lead to two bookings before Callum Murray fired wide from a Ryan Cowie cross but Dunbar weathered the storm well and Andy Jones fired through a ruck of players from the edge of the box bringing the best out of Neil Mitchell in the visitors goal.

Just before the interval Jamie Devlin was inches away from connecting with a Jones cross before Dan Purves played the loose ball low across goal only to see Mitchell save well at Devlin’s feet but it was the home side who went in at the break one goal to the good.

Brodie Strang replaced Ryan Cowie for the visitors at the restart and the move almost paid dividends right away with two brilliant interventions by Dunbar’s Evan Fleming denying the visitors an equaliser.

Dunbar increased their lead moments later when Andy Jones picked up the ball on the left and shrugged off two Swifts tackles before firing a low drive under the advancing keeper and into the net for his tenth goal of the season.

With Dunbar dictating the play and playing some attractive football it was no surprise when they increased their lead to three in the 55th minute when some quick thinking from Darren Smith found Berwick Rangers loanee Dan Purves in the clear from his free kick and the hard working youngster wasted no time in cutting in from the right and firing home under the advancing keeper from the narrowest of angles to score his first ever goal in Dunbar colours.

On the hour mark Jamie Devlin ran clear on goal, drew the goalkeeper and fired inches wide of the goal with Dan Purves just failing to connect at the back post. The visitors looked a beaten side and made a triple substitution in an effort to get a foothold in the game and they finally got a life line fourteen minutes from time when ex Newtongrange Star midfielder Callum Murray was on hand to tap home from a left wing cross.

The Swifts threw everything they could muster at the Dunbar defence as they were determined to hang on to their seven match unbeaten League run, but some dogged Dunbar defending and good goalkeeping kept them out. Deep into injury time Darren Smith played in Andy Jones with only the keeper to beat but this time the Swifts keeper brought out a fine save to deny Jones his hat trick.

A deserved three points for Dunbar who now sit in seventh place in the League table with only four points less than the third placed team and with an away game next Saturday against Crossgates Primrose, they will hope to maintain their recent good form with kick-off at 2.30 pm.

Dunbar United :- Daniel Laing, Kieran Ingram, Jamie Devlin, Bob Berry, Darren Handling, Andy Jones, Scott Hay, Nicky Weir, Evan Fleming, Dan Purves, Darren Smith.

Substitutes :- Jordan Purves, Ben Bathgate, Michael Fairnie, John Johnstone.

The Swifts :- Neil Mitchell, Michael Paterson, Ryan Mauchlan, Callum Deas, Pat Scullion, Lewis Hynd, Tommy Simpson, Ryan Cowie, Callum Murray, Liam Kelly, Greig Spence.

Substitutes :- Charlie Simpson, Brodie Strang, Ynyr Liddell, Blair Duff, Kieran Annandale, Tam Graham, Darren Kaye.

Referee :-  Alastair Grieve

Assistant Referees :- Lewis Hogarth, Ken Boyd.

Match report courtesy of Laurie Wood.