Auchinleck Talbot awarded Scottish junior title despite being 12 points off top

How would you feel about your team winning the title when they're in third place, 12 points off the top and having played barely half of their league games?

That's exactly what has happened to Scottish junior club Auchinleck Talbot, who have been crowned champions of the West Region Premiership.

Why? Well because the Scottish Junior Football Association have ended the league season early on a points-per-game basis with all football in Scotland suspended until at least 10 June because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Talbot had earned 41 points to Kilwinning Rangers' 53, but had no fewer than nine games in hand on their Ayrshire rivals, who had played 25 of their 30 league games. Glasgow side Pollok were second on 42 points from 22 games.

But based on a formula looking at points per game average for home and away fixtures, Talbot finish as league winners.

Talbot's reward is that they get to compete in the Scottish Cup, a competition in which they reached the last 16 in 2019 after beating Championship side Ayr United.

A statement from the West Junior FA committee said: "We believe we must recognise each club that would have likely gone on to win their respective league titles. Success needs to be recognised even if factors are part of the deciding process."

It has proved a controversial move, especially as it is the last title of its kind, with 63 junior clubs moving to a new West of Scotland League for next season, which allows them to go for promotion towards the SPFL.

What a way to go out.

Tweet

Top Stories

Around Scottish sport