Kilmarnock preview

Kilmarnock preview

There will be no case of divided loyalties when Jamie Hamill returns to Rugby Park on Saturday.

The Stranraer manager is no stranger to the home of Kilmarnock Football Club and represented the Ayrshire side on nearly 200 occasions.

However, he was quick to dismiss any suggestions of it being an emotional return to where it all began.

He said: “Obviously, I have done a few interviews this week regarding the Kilmarnock situation.

“I had a good many years at Rugby Park and met some good people.

Hamill was a key man for Kilmarnock over a number of seasons

“There are still a couple of boys there from when I was there with Kilmarnock.

“At the end of the day, my focus is on Stranraer and we have got a big job to do against a good Championship side.”

Rugby Park will be a familiar sight to a number of the Stair Park squad, including Curtis Lyle.

The goalkeeper has featured in Stranraer’s contests with Clyde and East Kilbride since joining the Wigtownshire side on loan from tomorrow’s opponents.

However, he is ineligible for the final group game of the Premier Sports Cup, which opens the door for one of Jamie Walker, previously of Kilmarnock, or Luke Scullion to make their debut.

Hamill was keeping tight-lipped on who would get the nod between the sticks.

Curtis Lyle has had a promising start to his loan spell at Stranraer

Lyle kept his first clean sheet for the club in the 1-0 win over East Kilbride last time out.

The manager was happy with the defensive side of things but felt there will still plenty to come from his team.

He said: “You look at the Clyde game and how well we played.

“You look at the East Kilbride game and we were maybe fortunate to come away with three points.

“That’s football and you are going to play games and be the better team for 85 minutes but you get beat 1-0.

“Against East Kilbride, we defended really well at certain points and that was something I was really pleased with.”

Hamill also revealed discussions have been ongoing with a number of clubs with a view to further strengthening the squad, with the possibility of loan and permanent signings being weighed up.

Last meeting

Stranraer 0-2 Kilmarnock
24 January 1998

It has been more than 20 years since Stranraer and Kilmarnock last locked horns in a competitive match.

The Scottish Cup clash at Stair Park saw Stranraer almost get to half time with the scores goalless. However, right on the half time whistle, Jerome Vareille found the net.

Future Ayr United manager Mark Roberts scored four minutes into the second half and it was game over.

Stranraer: Matthews, Black, Campbell, Knox, Watson, Landsdowne, McAulay, McIntyre, English, Kinnaird, Young (Ramsay 79).
Not used: McCaffrey and Friels.

Kilmarnock: Marshall, McGowne, Lauchlan, MacPherson, Kerr, Holt, Mitchell, Reilly, Vareille, Roberts, Wright.
Not used: Henry, Baker and Bagan.

Last five games

The Blues were victorious in Saturday’s tie with East Kilbride

Stranraer

  • WIN v East Kilbride (H): 1-0 (Yates)
  • LOSS v Clyde (A): 1-0
  • WIN v Greenock Morton (H): 3-0
  • LOSS v Dumbarton (A): 1-0
  • DRAW v Dumbarton (H): 0-0

Kilmarnock

  • WIN v Greenock Morton (H): 1-1 (Connell) (Kilmarnock win 4-3 on penalties)
  • WIN v Clyde (A): 1-2 (Alston and Cameron (Pen))
  • LOSS v East Kilbride (A): 3-0 (Kilmarnock won 2-0 but were found to have an ineligible player)
  • LOSS v Dundee (H): 1-2 (Lafferty (Pen))
  • LOSS v Dundee (A): 2-1 (Haunstrup)

Last time out

Jamie Hamill named the same starting eleven against Clyde and East Kilbride

Stranraer v East Kilbride: Lyle, McIntosh, Robertson, Ross, Burns, Gallagher, Millar (Woods 70), Walker (Rennie 56), Yates, Muir (Hawkshaw 56), Moore (Langan 70).
Not used: Sonkur, Irving and Scullion.

Kilmarnock v Greenock Morton: Hemming, Haunstrup, E Murray, Stokes, Naismith, McGinn (Connell 79), F Murray, Lyons (Polwarth 64), Burke, McKenzie (Alston 24), Cameron (Armstrong 64).
Not used: McGowan, Craig, Smith, McArthur and Walker.

Coverage

Coverage will be provided by the home club

Sadly due to ongoing restrictions, only Kilmarnock supporters will be admitted for Saturday’s group stage tie at Rugby Park.

However, you can watch via the home club’s live stream from the comfort of your home, priced at £10.

Photos: Bill McCandlish, Kilmarnock FC