East Fife 0-0 Dunfermline Athletic (Dunfermline win 9-8 on penalties)

East Fife again force Dunfermline to check back during a well drilled defensive showing at Bayview. Pic by G McLuskie.
East Fife again force Dunfermline to check back during a well drilled defensive showing at Bayview. Pic by G McLuskie.

East Fife proved they'll be no pushover for anybody when the new league campaign kicks off.

Kingdom rivals Dunfermline Athletic arrived in Methil keen to build on the six goals they scored at the weekend against Elgin City.

Despite missing a host of key players, while their visitors were at full strength, East Fife held firm against a side many predict will be battling at the top end of the Championship.

There's no disguising the fact that the Pars had the majority of possession.

But despite boasting top class creative players like Joe Cardle and Kallum Higginbotham, they were unable to unlock a well drilled Fife resistance.

One look at the Fife starting line up and then glancing into the stands shows where East Fife's current problems lie.

Just three outfield players were listed on the bench, one of them being manager Darren Young and another Ryan Inglis who signed shortly before the game.

Jonathan Page, Kevin Smith, Mark Lamont, Kyle Wilkie and Chris Kane were amongst the regular starters watching on.

Dunfermline had the better of the opening exchanges but couldn't find a way past Thomas Cordery.

It was a game short on chances with Nicky Clark passing up the best Dunfermline mustered when he headed a Higginbotham corner over the bar.

Ryan Goodfellow replaced Cordery at the break and, like his team mate, watched on as his defence thwarted wave after wave of Dunfermline attack.

The Pars had threw everything at their hosts and had run out of ideas.

The final whistle brought a halt to the cup tie with a penalty shoot-out needed to decide who would take a bonus point.

Dunfermline had become notorious last season for their poor form from the spot, missing three penalties in one game against Dundee United.

To their credit both sides slammed away some outstanding penalties with neither 'keeper getting a sniff.

With the score at 9-8, Ben Gordon needed to score to keep the tie alive.

His penalty was decent enough but caught the bottom corner of the post and rolled back out to safety.

Bayview boss Young said: “It was a bit backs to the wall but we expected that.

“We wanted to create a few more chances but overall we dug in well against a full-time team.”