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Stranraer 0-0 Forfar Athletic

  • Post published:2 March 2024

Stranraer and Forfar Athletic served up a goalless draw in tricky conditions at Stair Park.

Neither team could find a breakthrough and had to settle for a stalemate and a point apiece.

Scott Agnew brought Ben Armour and Chris Johnston into the team after they had both impressed coming off the bench against Dumbarton seven days earlier.

However, it was Forfar who started on the front foot and the hosts had Lewis Budinauckas to thank for keeping the scores blank in the opening half an hour.

A slack pass in defence was collected by Finlay Allan, who got a shot away from the edge of the box.

The goalkeeper would have been expected to make the save and he touched it over the bar for a corner.

February’s Club 1870 Player of the Month Lewis Budinauckas made a string of important saves early on

Two minutes later and it was a more impressive stop keeping out the same player.

This time, Stranraer could only clear a corner to the edge of the box and Allan’s effort looked destined for the net until Budinauckas kept it out.

Midway through the half it was Matthew Allan, who was denied by the on-loan shotstopper.

There seemed little on as the defender strode forward but he took aim from 30 yards, with Budinauckas proving equal to it.

Finally, after the half hour mark, Stranraer awoke and called Marc McCallum into action at the other end.

Matty Grant did well down the right and put in a low cross, which the goalkeeper gathered at the second attempt.

The best chance of the afternoon fell to Blues winger Matty Grant

Sixty seconds later and Grant was again denied by the goalkeeper.

This time, the ball dropped to the Stranraer man just outside the box.

He went for precision rather than power and McCallum managed to push the ball to safety.

That momentum continued after the break as Kyle Girvan nodded straight at the goalkeeper before Stranraer came within a whisker of finding a way through.

Johnston slipped the ball through to James Dolan, who found a yard of space and rolled a shot across McCallum’s goal before it bobbled just past the right upright.

Stranraer’s bid for three welcome points was given a boost with 15 minutes left.

Stuart Morrison had received a yellow card five minutes before the interval and was given a second booking and an early bath with quarter of an hour to play.

Stuart Morrison was dismissed, handing Stranraer a chance to grab the win in the closing stages

Five minutes later and the hosts worked the chance that would have given them three points.

Grant only had McCallum to beat and kept his shot low but the experienced goalkeeper threw out a leg to make the block.

By now, Forfar seemed the more content with a draw and saw the game out.

Stranraer do not have long to wait for an opportunity to secure three more points as they welcome Dumbarton on Tuesday night.

Stranraer: Budinauckas, Girvan, C Ross, McQueen, Ecrepont, Dolan, Forrest, Fleming, Johnston, Grant, Armour (Lang 68).
Not used: Williamson, Miller, Orr and Downie.

Forfar Athletic: McCallum, Brindley, M Allan, Hutchinson, Munro, Morrison, Whatley, Mykyta (Thomson 69), S Ross (Mohammed 69), F Allan (Lobban 78), McLean.
Not used: Nditi, Moore, Inglis, Scally and Paris.

Referee: Alastair Grieve
Attendance: 302
HT: 0-0

Photos: Bill McCandlish