East Fife 0 Dunfermline Athletic 0

Last updated : 08 January 2005 By Footymad Previewer
Dunfermline narrowly escaped a Scottish cup shock at the hands of their lowly neighbours at East Fife.

Last season's cup finalists couldn't break down the home defence and had Derek Stillie to thank for keeping them in the cup.

The keeper's second half block from Steven Nicholas saved Althletic as they faced an embarrassment almost as acute as their UEFA Cup exit to an Icelandic side. The SPL outfit were booed off the park at the final whistle as angry fans rounded on manager Davie Hay.

Dunfermline bloodied new man Jesper Christiansen, and the giant Dane formed a twin-power strike partnership with Andy Tod.

With both strikers well over six feet, Pars took to the air. Lee Makel picked out Scott M Thomson with a free-kick, whose header came back off the bar. Barry Nicholson tried to kick-start misfiring Dunfermline, and after 34 minutes his cross for Christiansen was just nodded behind for a corner. From Makel's delivery Tod thumped in a header which forced Scott Morrison into a fingertip save.

East Fife began to believe they could pull off a shock, and Brian Fairbairn forced Gary Kelly into a desperate save in the 52nd minute.

Tod then tried an overhead kick, but the ball landed just wide.

Barry Nicholson was easily Dunfermline's best player and was unlucky when his half volley came back off the bar.

Hay sent on Noel Hunt for the tiring Christiansen, but it was East Fife who would have made the break through but for an outstanding save.

Nicholas let fly from eight yards but Kelly flung out an arm to direct the ball over the bar. Pars skipper Thomson limped off and their chances disappeared with him as the game finished goalless and the match will now go to a replay.