Last updated : 08 May 2005 By Duke Of Galloway

A rather dodgy referee
A tremendous second-half performance from an understrength Queens team gained a memorable victory over champions Falkirk and somewhat spoiled the promotion party. There were hilarious scenes before the kick-off as hundreds of Queens fans,many in fancy dress converged on the smart new Falkirk Stadium. There was bedlam as the aghast police and stewrds were confronted by a pantomime horse,sexy nurses,provocative nuns,mad monks,various Elvis look alikes,a Rab C Nesbit,a 118 lookalike,a batwoman,a curvacious famale ref and a wonderful gang of male and females from a Dumfries pub dressed up in VE day costumes complete with gas masks. Even Dougie the Doonhamer made it and was seen downing a few sherries in the Edge Pub before kick-off.It was a glorious turnout by the Queens fans and the Falkirk support looked quite stunned by it all. It was difficult to concentrate on the game as bedlam prevailed in the away support section of the stand. The game kicked off as the pantomime horse was being escorted to it's seat by the stewards who by this time had given up hope of any order. Falkirk started the brighter but Queens who were obviously relishing the magnificent playing surface gradually made inroads into a Falkirk defence who looked strangely nervious in front of their expectant support. Queens despite Reid,Lyle and Paton all missing were holding their own although ex Ranger Duffy should have put the Bairns one up but fluffed his shot. McLaughlan had a glorious chance for Queens but much to the disgust of the away support, shot straight at Ferguson in the Falkirk goal. The Champions took the lead on 17 minutes and it was a disaster for the Queens defence. Keeper Barnard looked slow to get to a cross which McBreen managed to lay off for Lawrie to bullet high into the net. Queens were by no means downhearted and refused to give up and roared on by their fans still took the game to Falkirk with Payne causing havoc on the right. There was no further scoring before the break although McBreen and Scally went close.Falkirk just about deserved their lead at half-time but Queens were still in with a shout.

Half-Time - Falkirk 1 Queens 0

Queens really came out fighting in the second-half as manager Scott decided to have a real go at Falkirk. Queens began to dominate and the Falkirk defence were not too happy and resorted to some dubious tactics to stop the now rampant Doonhamers. The noisy away support sensed something and started a continuous rant of the famous Wheelbarrow song which they kept up for most of the second half. As Queens swept forward the home defence started to give away free-kicks in dangerous positions and from one of those kicks Payne almost scored. Gibson was now on and started to run at the overworked Bairns defence and the young winger was getting some really rough treatment. Another free-kick from Payne brought off a wonderful save from the Falkirk keeper Ferguson amidst absolute bedlam in the away stand. The pressure was mounting on the home defence and it was no surprise when Kernaghan turned the ball into his own net on 79th after another free-kick. The delirious Queens support were now in full voice and they went absolute bananas when McNiven swept the ball into the net three minutes from the end to gain a memorable victory. This was a remarkable performance from a Queens team without three of it's regulars and everyone was a hero and none more so then Queens player of the season Jim Thomson who completely stifled the Falkirk dangerman McBreen. Payne also had another magnificent game with his free-kicks a highlight. The midfield again was solid with Lovell playing a wonderful holding role which allowed even Thomson to forage up field. Carr filled in well at the back and he will be an asset to Queens in the future. All the Queens fans were a credit to the club as they turned up in their hundreds in fancy dress. There was no trouble whatsoever and most stayed behind at the end to applaud the Bairns receiving their Championship trophy. It was also very touching to see the Falkirk fans applauding the Queens fans as they left the stadium. Many Queens fans were also seen shaking hands with Falkirk fans in and around the stadium after the final whistle. This is what football is all about away from all the bigotry which blights other areas of Scottish Football. Queens manager Scott and his staff can reflect on a successful season and they should be congratulated. We can look forward to next season and who knows we may even lift the Division 1 title.

A Payne free-kick just slips past