A season to remember for Kirkcaldy & Dysart

Kirkcaldy & Dysart boss Craig Ness says his team’s efforts over the course of last season were “phenomonal”

By Paul McCabe
Wednesday, 8th June 2022, 11:57 am
Kirkcaldy & Dysart ended the season just two points off second place in Conference A (Pic: Fife Photo Agency)
Kirkcaldy & Dysart ended the season just two points off second place in Conference A (Pic: Fife Photo Agency)

The Alex Penman Park side finished fourth in the East of Scotland League’s Conference A and qualified for nest season’s newly-formed Championship for 2022/23.

Ness says he was proud of his players’ achievements.

“We finished the season in fourth place but just two points off of second spot,” he said.

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“To do that we had to win our last two games of the season.

"In our final game against Arniston I think we were a bit laboured in the first half so I said to them at half time if we increased it by 10-15 per cent we would win the game and that's what we did.”

The fourth-placed finish is an altogether more impressive feat as Kirkcaldy’s toiled in their first season in the EoS, suffering a number of heavy defeats before the league was scrapped to the pandemic.

“We had to improve on last season,” Ness says.

“I freely admit I was caught cold coming to the East of Scotland League.

“I thought after being in the Juniors for so long that I knew the level but I didn't and last season was tough.

“So we set out or stall for this season. The way we looked at it was the money spent by other teams and the experience of the other teams.

“Dunpiace, Haddington and Leith are all quality sides so we thought we would struggle to finish in the top seven (and qualify for the Championship).

“We felt as though we would be close to eighth or ninth, so we targeted being the best of the rest.

"Eighth would have seen us qualify for Division Two, but it became pretty evident around August that we were better than a lot of teams.

“We brought in some players like Jay Bridgeford and Rikki Cooper who made a massive difference and helped us to settle.

“We sold a couple of boys and some others left so the squad became tighter because it was smaller and we went on an incredible run.”

In 26 games K&D only lost twice; away to Linlithgow in the cup and away again to Conference A champions Haddington.

“There's no disgrace in that,” says Ness, “that's 24 games of football this season where we've not tasted defeat.

"That's a brilliant thing to have in a dressing room.”

He added: “We’ve put down a marker now and we need to take this momentum into next season.”