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East Fife went into the game as league leaders, having beaten Elgin 3-1 in our season opener last weekend, Bonnyrigg Rose however had also picked up 3 points in their opening match with a 2-0 win against Angus club Forfar Athletic. The Fifers were seeking to make it two wins on the bounce, this time in front of the Fife Faithful.

No changes were made to the starting eleven that had beaten Elgin city 3-1 with recent loan signing Joao Balde taking his place on the bench.

Kevin Smith got the game underway for Bonnyrigg Rose but the first chance of the half fell the way of the hosts. Ryan Schiavone nicely flicked the ball to Brogan Walls who turned his man to shoot from the edge of the box, however Weir gathers the ball safely and calmly in the Bonnyrigg goal. 8 minutes after the chance for the Fifers, Bonnyrigg won a penalty when Walls was adjudged to have bundled over Ross Gray in the area. Neil Martyniuk stepped up and sent Fleming the wrong way, making it 1-0 to the travelling team. Directly after the goal, Crawford was forced to make a double substitution with Walls making way for Mikey Cunningham and new signing Joao Balde making his debut for the club coming on for Scott Shepard.

Nearing the half hour mark, Bonnyrigg Rose doubled their lead as ex-Fifer Jonny Stewart sent a low pass into the box from the wing, which was met by Kieran McGachie in the centre, who laid it off to Dean Brett just inside the area who placed home a curling effort into the bottom corner.

The final chance of the half came with 5 minutes to go, when Hibs Loanee Joao Balde took a shot from outside the box, however his effort was narrowly dragged wide of the goal. A short while after the referee blew up for half time, despite the relatively even game, it gave East Fife a mountain to climb in the second half.

On the hour mark, East Fife legend, Kevin Smith further extended the lead of the visitors Martyniuk’s low free kick found feet of Smith who fired past Fleming into the bottom corner.

With 20 minutes of the game remaining, East Fife made a third substitution with Alex Ferguson making way for Jack Healy. Healy didn’t take long to get into the game, as he sent a perfectly placed cross from the right wing onto the head of Mikey Cunningham, however Cunningham failed to find the net as his close-range header went wide and over.

East Fife made their fourth and final change of the game as Cunningham limped off injured to be replaced by Pat Slattery. With 10 minutes remaining, East Fife began to ramp up the pressure and went close to pulling one back as Scott Mercer’s cross narrowly evaded the outstretched Aaron Steele at the back post. Two minutes later Balde sent a good cross into the danger area, however no is there to meet it and the ‘keeper was able to collect.

Bonnyrigg finished the game a man down as Connolly receives a second yellow for taking down Balde. The resulting free kick from Mercer forced Weir to make a good save. After 3 minutes of added time the referee blew the full-time whistle. A disappointing result for the Fifer makes next week’s away trip to Albion Rovers all the more important.

Andrew Laing