Darvel 0 Largs Thistle 1

LEWIS DAVIDSON headed home the only goal as Largs Thistle pulled off another fantastic victory on their travels to shock Premier League high-fliers Darvel.

Recreation Park has been a happy hunting ground for Largs during the past five years, including a memorable Scottish Cup encounter in 2019, and a victory in 2023 over a Darvel side who just two months later went on to dump Aberdeen out of the Scottish Cup.

The win took Thistle up to sixth in the Premier Division, tied on points with Tony McInally's men and just one place behind them.

It also keeps Thistle's amazing run going which sees them second in the form league table over the past ten weeks of fixtures - a run bettered only by Auchinleck Talbot.

There was a surprise in the Largs starting line-up, with John Cumming making only his third appearance of the season featuring in defence.

The first opening came for Largs on seven minutes as livewire midfielder Liam Lapsley forced Darvel into a clearance, and Ramsay then headed over the bar as the visitors made a positive start to proceedings.

And their early positivity was rewarded on 14 minutes when Davidson, who had seen much of the early part of his season blighted by injury, headed home to give the visitors the advantage.

Darvel looked for an equaliser but found Largs keeper Joe Wilton more than equal to their efforts on goal with saves on 18 and 42 minutes as Thistle held out to half-time.


Thistle's top scorer Will Sewell nearly doubled the visitors' advantage on 57 minutes, but shot narrowly wide after turning his man - and Darvel had another narrow escape on the hour when David Ramsay tried but just failed to connect with a dangerous cross.

At the other end the crossbar came to Thistle's rescue two minutes later.

David McGrath came on for Cumming on 69 minutes as Largs kept pushing in search of a second - and the visitors nearly got themselves that extra cushion three minutes later, but Ramsay was unable to convert after a Sewell shot was saved by the keeper on the tricky surface.

Largs and Millport Weekly News: David Ramsay in actionDavid Ramsay in action (Image: Newsquest)

Further substitutions followed with Scott Adam and Darryl Duffy replacing Sewell and Ramsay on 74 minutes to provide fresh legs.

And five minutes later, Duffy broke clear, but his shot flashed wide.

Largs and Millport Weekly News: Darryl Duffy was a danger off the bench against DarvelDarryl Duffy was a danger off the bench against Darvel (Image: Newsquest)

Laurie McMaster then replaced the hard-working Lapsley as time ticked down, but Thistle had to play out the final moments with ten men after Blair Devine was shown a red card with three minutes of regulation time to be played.

Wilton came to Thistle's rescue again with another crucial stop on 89 minutes as the visitors held out for a win which extends their fine recent run to one defeat in nine - and which dealt a major blow to Darvel's own title hopes.

And while their own championship chances may be long gone, Largs could yet have a big part to play in the destiny of the title, with Beith and Auchinleck Talbot among the teams still to come to Barrfields in the closing weeks of the campaign.

Thistle's next game is away to Hurlford United at Blair Park on Wednesday April 16, with a 6.30pm kick-off.

LARGS: Wilton, Hughes, Devine, McCreath, Cumming, Faulds, McLeod, Davidson, Sewell, Lapsley, Ramsay. Subs: Adam, Duffy, Martin, McGrath, McMaster, Tennent, Zalewski (GK)