0 - 1
0 - 1
Something approaching a record crowd gathered at the Showgrounds that evening for the game. Although threatening, the rain fortunately kept off, and for a considerable time prior to the kick-off all roads led to Warden Street, many coming from Belfast, Portrush, Derry, Coleraine and other centres by special trains, and enthusiasm reached a high pitch.
The Ballymena Silver Band, under the leadership of Mr. C. Ashdown, whiled away the period of waiting with a choice of programme of music, which included popular Irish and Scottish airs, and sellers of the souvenir programmes, published by the Ballymena Supporters' Club for the occasion, were kept busy at the same time. Ballymena was at full cup-tie strength and, first out, had a great reception. Kilmarnock had no less a cordial reception, and looked all over a hefty and business-like lot.
Ballymena won the toss, and playing with the breeze were the first to attack, Cassidy sending in from close range, but the ball struck the side net. The home side still played brilliantly and the 'Killies' goal had several narrow escapes, particularly from McCambridge and later Cassidy; then Clemie had to look lively with Shiels almost on top of him. Fully five minutes had elapsed before Gough was called into action, and he had no difficulty in clearing his lines.
Play reverted quickly to the other end, where Cassidy again sent across and Nibloe, mis-judging the flight of the ball, left Mitchell with a great opening close in. The latter drove past, however, with a hard first time drive that would have given Clemie no chance had the direction been more accurate. Gough had no handle in the course of another brief attack by the 'Killies' and then Ballymena forced a corner which was beautifully placed by Clarke and, after several heads had got at the ball, Robertson, standing on the goal line, got it away.
Ballymena continued to have the best of it and forced another corner, this time on the left; Cassidy placed well and John Reid was unlucky to head over in a good attempt to goal. Clemie's charge was still having most attention in the subsequent play. McCambridge sending in a long drive which just grazed the upper side of the cross-bar, and, after Clarke had sent past, McCambridge headed over a corner kick, well placed by Clarke.
Killie then took up the running, and their best attempt so far came from Aiken, who skimmed the wrong side of the cross-bar. Nice open play, in which the ball was kept swinging, made ground for the home side, and Clarke sent across to Shiels, who bored through, but Clemie fisted away in the course of a melee. The interval arrived with the score sheet blank.
The Scotchmen on getting the breeze took full advantage of it in making ground, and early forced a corner, which was nicely placed by Connal. Ramsey, however, headed over, and play went to the visitors' end, where Robertson nipped in and spoiled a nice movement. A minute later John Reid was at fault in placing badly, and Cunningham gt going down the centre. Although the odds seemed very much against him getting through, he held on and worring through beat Gough with a low grounder for the first goal of the match.
The next few minutes saw Kilmarnock indulging in fancy stuff and keeping Ballymena pretty well in their own end. The Irishmen gradually worked back, however, and McCambridge sent in a great shot which Clemie stopped brilliantly, when almost on all-fours - one of the best saves of the match. Excitement ran high when Mitchell made ground and sent across to Cassidy, who was lying well clear, but Robertson deflected his shot.
Match report written by Ballymena Weekly Telegraph (4 May 1929)