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Around The Uk

Monday, 25 September, 2000, 19:28 GMT 20:28 UK
Livingston v East Stirlingshire preview
George Fairley is hoping for another giantkilling act
George Fairley is hoping for another giantkilling act
East Stirlingshire manager George Fairley is hoping for fairytale ending to his club's giantkilling Challenge Cup run.

The third division side face a daunting task of travelling to face favourites Livingston on Tuesday with both clubs out to make history.

However, Fairley insists that his side are up to the task, despite missing out on making it five wins in a row on Saturday.

Shire have already caused a few shocks in the competition, having disposed of first division Morton and second division Stenhousemuir, managed by his own brother.

Biggest test

However, facing the first division leaders at Almondvale is their biggest test yet and Fairley said: "We have never even been to the semi-finals of a national trophy before, so if we got to the finals, or even won the Challenge Cup, it would be a fairytale.

"We've had Livingston watched and they are an excellent side - we'll have to have everything going for us if we are to get past them.

Jim Leishman knows it will not be easy
Jim Leishman knows it will not be easy
"But it is tremendous for the club just to get this far in the competition and we will give everything we've got."

After four straight wins, Shire possibly had their eyes on the semi-final as they were held to a draw at home to Albion Rovers on Saturday.

Fairley, though, stressed: "If we could get the win it would be a massive boost for us, but the whole place is already buzzing."

Steven Stewart returns to the squad after missing Saturday's game to attend a wedding, but striker Andy Scott is still ruled out with a calf injury.

Livingston general manager Jim Leishman is so determined to take the West Lothian side to the final of the competition for the first time that he has had his opponents watched several times.

He knows that, despite being separated by two divisions, Shire will be no pushovers. "They are a very good team with good players and we know they will be up for it," he said.

Good reports

"They went to East End Park for the League Cup and, despite being beaten by Dunfermline, came away with very good reports about the way they played.

"They have also beaten Morton and Stenhousemuir in this competition, so we expect them to play well.

"But we have never been in a cup final before - it's a national competition and we are geared up for it and we want to go out there and win it."

Full-back Paddy Kelly is still injured and central defender Graeme Coughlan's red card in Saturday's win at Airdrie means that he is suspended.

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See also:

25 Sep 00 |  Scotland
Stranraer v Airdrieonians preview
23 Sep 00 |  Scot Div 3
East Stirlingshire 1-1 Albion Rovers
23 Sep 00 |  Scot Div 1
Airdrieonians 1-2 Livingston
13 Sep 00 |  Scotland
Livingston 3-1 Brechin City
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