Hearts back in the title race with a vital 3 points.

Tuesday 10th 2012.

Kingdom Caledonian League.

Cupar Hearts made the journey to face league leaders Leven United in a top of the table clash. The heavy rain made the playing surface slippery and unpredictable but this did not deter the big crowd that gathered to see the top two sides in the Kingdom Caledonian League. Hearts were missing Barry Sibanda and so Iain O’Leary took his place up front to partner Michael Reilly. Leven were unlucky not to open the scoring after 6 minutes when Nathan Austin’s header came back off the upright. The home side were reduced to ten men after 23 minutes when Craig Lamont recklessly tackled Michael Reilly from behind and was shown a straight red. Iain O’Leary had two good efforts, the first inches wide then a header well saved by Gary Mitchell. Hearts piled on the pressure and made the break through on the half hour mark with a free kick by Iain Boylan. His cross was put back in by Robert Crawford at the back post and headed home by Scott McInroy through a ruck of players. At the other end a corner by the home side was well gathered by Steven McEwan. Then an excellent run and cross by Iain O’Leary found Michael Reilly but he blasted over and so Hearts took the slender lead into the break. The rain eased off for the second period and Leven reorganised and put pressure on Hearts. Nathan Austin had the best chance for the home side when he ran unchallenged but Steven McEwan saved well. Cupar were kept on the back foot for the majority of the second half but the defence stood firm clearing corner after corner. Substitute Gary Reilly should have sealed the game when he latched on to a good Stephen Kane cross but his effort was fired wide. It was an excellent hard fought victory for Hearts who put in 100% commitment and determination to pick up the points.

Team: McEwan, Crawford, McInroy, Anderson (c), Gilfillan, Nicol, McLean, Boylan, O’Leary, Fraser and O’Leary. Subs: Halley, Kane, Rintoul, Honeyman, Simpson and Kane.