Raith Rovers 1 Kilmarnock 3
(Scottish Cup Qrtr Final, Starks Park, Kirkcaldy, March 18th 1972)
Raith proved one thing conclusively - they just don't come any braver. But Killie were too long in the tooth, to lose to bravery alone, and sadly for Rovers, in every department, the First Division boys had the edge.
It looked as if the Fife manager, George Farm had wound his men up, to run for 90 minutes, and they ram-stammed away, trying to knock the Ayrshire men out of their stride.
Farm had also done a good job of winding Killie up, in the press, in the lead up to the match.
All this hype only got Raith was a Staite goal and 2 bookings - Staite himself, for chopping Gilmour down, and skipper Dempsey for talking out of turn.
Killie, on the other hand approached the game, with a combination of composure and sophistication - and two dangerous strikers in Ross Mathie & Eddie Morrison.
It was in the first half that Killie laid the foundation for a semi-final place. McGrory's free-kick which followed Staite's booking was headed goalwards by Mathie, McDermott did well to beat the ball out, but wee Jimmy Cook had no bother shooting into an ungarded net, in the 35 minute.
Before this Raith had given the visitors some trying moments. Georgeson beat their offside trap, only to run the ball too far, and give the alert Ally Hunter time to whip the ball off his toes.
Then Hunter needed two attempts to hold a Wallace shot, with Georgeson breathing down his neck.
After Killie's goal, however the midfield of Maxwell and Gilmour gained a strangle-hold on the game that not even the robust Dempsey could break.
Killie started the second half with initiative and in the 54th min George Maxwell had time to let McSherry's cross drop before lashing a vicious left shot past McDermott.
Staite did raise Raith's hopes 2 mins later, but Eddie Morrison tied things up for Killie, some 20 mins later.
Eddie swung his deadly right boot, first time at a McSherry pass, from outside the box, hitting the ball so cleanly, that had McDermott been in the way of the shot, he too would of been carried into the Raith goal! The shot was a rocket daisy-cutter low to the keeper's left, which was placed just inches inside the post!
Raith in the post match press, were given the credit for having the will to win, but certainly needed to slow down their franticly paced efforts.
Best for Killie were Dickson, Maxwell, Rodman, Mathie and Morrison, for a well rounded efficient Killie side.
Kilmarnock : Hunter, Dickson, Cairns, Maxwell, Rodman, McGrory, McSherry, Gilmour, Mathie, Morrison, Cook.
Killie manager Walter McRae said of Morrison's goal.... "One of the finest goals I have ever seen a Kilmarnock player score".