Johnny Russell netted a hat-trick as Dundee United eased to a Scottish Cup victory at Stair Park.

Stranraer were no match for the lively striker as Russell knocked in two strikes inside the opening 26 minutes.

Russell then set up Jon Daly to extend the visitors' lead before the interval.

Daly tapped in his second from close range at a corner following a great save from David Mitchell from Russell, who himself stroked in his third goal on 69 minutes.

The Scottish Premier League side made the trip to Stair Park keen to avoid a potential upset and never looked in any danger as Russell's hat-trick and a brace from Daly secured a routine win.

It was the first time the two sides had met since August 2004, when the Tannadice side won 3-1.

Stranraer goalkeeper Mitchell was called into action within the opening five minutes.

A corner was cut back to Stuart Armstrong who spotted the goalkeeper a few yards off his line. He tried to float the ball over Mitchell from the edge of the box but the number one backpedalled to tip it over the crossbar.

Still, that only delayed the opener by a few minutes.

Barry Douglas' cross took a kind deflection off right back Mark Staunton and fell kindly to Russell. The striker then buried it first time between Mitchell and the near post from just six yards.

Even when the Blues got a foot on the ball it was quickly recovered by the hungry-looking opposition.

United added a second on 26 minutes and again Douglas and Russell were involved.

The left-back again pushed forward and whipped the ball in where it was controlled by Rudi Skacel. Last year's cup winner squared it to Russell, who turned his man and rolled the ball into the bottom left corner.

Any chance of a Stranraer comeback was extinguished before the break.

Once again the ball came from the left but this time it was Daly who scored, making no mistake from close range after Russell's initial attempt.

The second half continued much in the same manner, Stranraer trying to push forward but unable to really threaten Radoslaw Cierzniak's goal.

United who looked more dangerous as Keith Watson hit the crossbar.

No goal there, but Daly grabbed his second just minutes later.

The hosts failed to clear a corner from the left and the striker was lurking to bundle it home.

A long day for Stranraer was compounded when Russell completed his hat-trick on 69 minutes.

Mitchell blocked substitute Michael Gardyne's low angled shot with his legs but Russell rattled in the rebound from the edge of the 18-yard box.

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