With no wins in the League since mid November, Maud had been sucked towards the bottom of the SuperLeague and only a win against Sunnybank would restore much needed confidence and a vital three points.
Maud Manager, Ian Bruce had almost a full squad to pick from so was able to make changes and also have a strong bench for the first time for months.
Things did not go to plan straight away though, after a period of sustained pressure in the Maud penalty area, Sunnybank took the lead when the ball was not cleared and before they knew it the ball was in the back of the net.
On 20 minutes Maud were awarded a free kick 25 yards from goa. Ross Walker curled the ball around the wall but it hit the foot of the post and behind for a goal kick.
Five minutes later Zander Davidson took the ball down the left and crossed into the middle where it looked like Luke Barbour at the far post only had to tap it home but somehow it went into the side netting.
Minutes later another Maud attack saw the ball cleared to the oncoming Bruce Davidson but his shot was deflected over for a corner.
On 27 minutes Barbour again won possession and ran through the middle into the box.
He passed it wide to Duguid but again his shot was wide of the target.
A minute later Maud could have been two down when a simple cross from the left found ex Maud player Whyte unmarked in the box.
His header was well saved by Gatt who pushed it onto the post and the rebound luckily came back to him.
On 33 minutes Maud had the chance to equalise when the ball was played into Walker’s feet just inside the penalty area. The defenders were all over him and the referee award a penalty.
Walker decided to take it himself but blasted the ball wide of the right hand post.
Two minutes later yet another chance when a quick throw in on the left to John WIllox in the ‘bank area saw him turn and shoot across goal but again it was deflected over the bar.
Five minutes before half time, Barbour took the ball down the right and laid it inside to Walker in the area but although unmarked his shot was week and Knowles in the ‘bank goal easily collected.
The half finished with Sunnybank in front but with having so many chances surely it was only a matter of time in the second half before they scored.
Maud went straight onto the attack in the opening minutes of the second half with snow starting to lie on the pitch and after only a minute they won a corner on the left.
It was swung into the penalty area, flicked on and then Luke Barbour headed the ball home from six yards for the deserved equaliser.
Within three minutes Maud were in front she more sustained pressure saw the ball played into Duguid ten yards from goal. He brought it down and turned and hit his shot low into the far corner for Maud’s second.
Maud were now playing with more pace and Sunnybank were struggling to cope.
After 60 minutes Maud were further ahead when Barbour played it wide to Zander Davidson and his cross into the area was met firmly by Duguid to head home Maud’s third goal.
Maud took their foot off the gas at this point and the game settled into a similar pattern to the first half.
Then 20 minutes from time Duguid collected the ball on the edge of the pitch and shot but it was well saved to prevent his hat trick.
With 12 minutes to go the game was essentially over when Maud won a free kick on the right 35 yards out.
It was quickly taken to Simpson who had pushed forward into the box, he brought the ball down on his chest and simply side footed it past Knowles for the fourth goal, just like a centre forward !
There were no more goals and so Maud ran out comfortable winners. They showed in the second half that if they play with pace there are not many teams can match them but it’s their inconsistency that is letting them down.
However this was a great moral boosting win and three vital points in the bag and a much improved performance.
This week Maud have a Superleague game at home to Stonehaven with a 2pm kick off.
MAUD: Gatt, B.Davidson,Simpson, Gray, Rae, MacDonald, Walker, A.Davidson, Willox, L.Barbour, Duguid. Subs: Leslie, Reid, Massie, Arthur, Hall, Fraser, J.Barbour