Glens and Blues in Oval draw

The Big Two failed to take full advantage of the postponement of Crusaders’ clash with league leaders Cliftonville on Saturday, with Glentoran playing out a 1-1 draw against Linfield at the Oval.

Published 16/02/2013 12:00

In spite of the fact that Glentoran and Linfield currently sit sixth and third in the table respectively, the showpiece game in the Irish league has lost none of its lustre, with thousands of fans at the Oval to witness the derby clash.

It was the visitors who struck first when Michael Carville headed a Billy Joe Burns pass into the path of Phillip Lowry, who bundled the ball home from close range just before half time.

The hosts were then reduced to 10 men in the 75th minute when Mark Clarke was sent off for an apparent stamp on Linfield's Mark McAllister, but Eddie Patterson's side continued to battle and grabbed an equaliser from the penalty spot four minutes from time.

Jay Magee dispatched the spot kick after William Murphy had fouled Martin Murray inside the area.

Elsewhere there were wins for both of the bottom two clubs, with Donegal Celtic overcoming Ballinamallard and Lisburn Distillery seeing off Glenavon.

Ciaran Burns struck the decisive goal for DC when he turned in a corner in the 73rd minute, although the hosts lost Paul Bradley to a second yellow card in the dying stages of the game.

In the match at Ballyskeagh Distillery, who had won only two games so far this season, took the lead in the 37th minute when Scott Davidson blasted low past Davy O'Hare in the Glenavon goal.

The Lurgan Blues equalised before the break when Mark Farren nodded in Kyle Neill's cross two minutes before the break, but Aaron Boyd's header through a congested penalty area with 15 minutes left was enough to secure a much-needed three points for the Whites.

In the game at the Ballymena Showgrounds, Coleraine continued their dominance over fierce rivals Ballymena United with a 1-0 win over the Sky Blues, with Curtis Allen's 19th minute header the only goal of the game.

Finally Portadown's hopes of securing a top-six finish before the league split suffered a blow after they went down 2-0 away to Dungannon Swifts.

Johnny Topley netted the opener for the hosts in the 29th minute, rising unmarked to head home Michael McKerr's cross.

It was McKerr's wide play which led to the Swifts' second of the afternoon, with Ports defender Chris Ramsay diverting his low cross into his own net in the 59th minute to seal the win for Darren Murphy's side.

Cliftonville's game against Crusaders was called off after fans were unable to get into the grounds safely because of disorder following a protest at Seaview.

Saturday's Dankse Bank Premiership results:

Ballymena Utd 0-1 Coleraine
Coleraine: Allen 19

Crusaders P-P Cliftonville

Donegal Celtic 1-0 Ballinamallard Utd
Donegal Celtic: C Burns 73; P Bradley s/o 90+3

Dungannon Swifts 2-0 Portadown
Dungannon Swifts: Topley 28, Ramsey og 59

Glentoran 1-1 Linfield
Glentoran: Magee pen 86; M Clarke s/o 75
Linfield: Lowry 45

Lisburn Distillery 2-1 Glenavon
Lisburn Distillery: Davidson 37, Boyd 75
Glenavon: Farren 43

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