Chris Duggan delighted to repay Raith Rovers fans for derby turn-out

Chris Duggan towers above Dunfermline right-back James Craigen to win this header. Pics: Fife Photo Agency
Chris Duggan towers above Dunfermline right-back James Craigen to win this header. Pics: Fife Photo Agency

Raith Rovers striker Chris Duggan was delighted to play a huge part in Saturday’s Scottish Cup win over Dunfermline.

The 24-year-old was brought down for the red card to Pars defender Lee Ashcroft, while he also won the penalty which kick-started the second half scoring spree.

He then delivered a superb cross for Lewis Vaughan’s second goal, and while the hat-trick hero took all the glory, Duggan’s influence was not unnoticed.

He was just happy to repay the home fans for a fantastic turn-out.

“There was a lot of hype around this game leading up to the weekend, and I was glad for the fans we managed to deliver a performance,” he said.

“Dunfermline are a good side and we knew they weren’t going to come here and make it easy for us.

“I thought they were the better team in the first half and we struggled to get up the park.

“Robbie’s pulled off a fantastic save that’s kept us in the game. I don’t think he gets credit a lot of the time, but he showed up today when called upon.

“In the second half we managed to get a foothold in the game and take our chances.”

Duggan felt the derby atmosphere helped carry the team to victory.

“It makes a huge difference,” he said.

“I don’t know if it’s coincidence but we were shooting into the Dunfermline end in the first half, then as soon as we’re shooting into the home end, you hear the noise as you get closer to the goal, and it plays a huge part in the performance.

“Sometimes in big games the moment can get ahead of you but I thought we handled it well and gave the fans and players a night they’ll remember for a while.”

Rovers had to defend for the majority of the opening hour as Dunfermline dominated the ball, and Duggan was quick to recognise a full team performance.

“Lewis got the three goals but I thought to a man every single person on the team showed up,” he said. “You don’t beat Dunfermline with just one or two boys playing well. You need everyone.

“Defensively we kept a clean sheet which is something we’ve been struggling with, so the defence takes huge credit for the win as well.”

Duggan has taken his chance following the injury to Kevin Nisbet but with the top scorer due to return this weekend, the manager faces a selection dilemma.

“I got my chance by Nizzy going out injured, but we’re a team and we’re all in this together,” Duggan said.

“It’s a long season and there’s times when Nizzy will play a part, I’ll play a part, and other boys will play a part.

“We’ve both shown we can do a job up there, but I don’t think it’s a case of it’s either Nizzy or Duggan. We’re both in the same team and we all just want to get promoted, and maybe get a run in this cup.

“Whoever is called upon needs to deliver, and that’s all that matters.”