This was always going to be a difficult fixture with the combination of Cambuslang Rangers being an excellent side sitting top of the Conference and the Carluke squad decimated with injuries and other outside commitments.
Right from the outset Cambuslang were knocking the ball about at the back with Carluke sitting deep and allowing them to come on to them. On top of this Carluke did not close their men down and pressurise the ball making it very easy for Cambuslang Rangers. It took a very good diving save from Dean Wilson down to his right in the Carluke goal to deny Cambuslang their opener as early as the third minute. Then in the 7th minute another good save with his feet kept Cambuslang at bay.
It was therefore no surprise that after a couple of close misses Cambuslang took the lead in the 9th minute. A low shot from Tony Stevenson found the bottom corner of the net with Wilson having no chance. 1-0 to Cambuslang.
This was only a foretaste of things to come and 2 minutes later it was 2-0 when Scott Williamson shot underneath the Carluke Keeper into the net.
Carluke were to be their own worst enemy on several occasions in this game and when mistakes were made Cambuslang made them pay. This was the case in the 16th minute when a pass by the Keeper to one of the defender’s was knocked back to him but mishit only to find Paul Gordon who picked his spot to score Cambuslang’s third.
After half an hour Carluke conceded their fourth when a corner was headed back across the goal and hit the bar finding it’s way to the feet of Scott Williams and the striker had the easiest of tap ins to make it 4-0 at the break.
The second half was to be a carbon copy of the first with Cambuslang dominant and Carluke plotting their own downfall with individual errors that would prove costly. It only took till the 54th minute for Cambuslang to get their fifth. Scott Williamson, who looked offside, got the ball at the edge of the Carluke box and shot low and hard into the bottom corner to complete his hattrick.
To compound matters further for Carluke Dillon Duddy got himself a straight red card for dissent towards the Referee despite the Referee giving him plenty of opportunity to walk away. It was now a matter of damage limitation for Carluke but another error in defence saw a Carluke player caught out when trying to play his way out of the box and Ryan Stewart gratefully accepted this gift and slotted the ball home for number 6.
With 15 minute to go Cambuslang brought on Gordon Dick and he had an almost immediate impact on the game scoring twice in the last 10 minutes to make the final score Cambuslang Rangers 8 Carluke Rovers 0.
This was a poor performance by Carluke Rovers with nobody getting passmarks apart from Dean Wilson in goal who made several excellent saves. They need to put it behind them and with the return of a couple of players the game against Newmains United at the John Cumming Stadium on Tuesday night is a perfect opportunity to get back on track.Match Report by Stevie Kane
Photography by Kevin Ramage