Ayr United 1
Jordan Preston 34
Forfar Athletic 0
Forfar Athletic fell four points behind in the League One title race, losing by a solitary goal away to Ayr United, dropping to fourth in the process.
Dick Campbell fielded an unchanged side from last week’s win over Dunfermline, although Gavin Malin took Aaron James’ spot on the bench after the defender departed the club with a ‘trialist’ keeper, under 20’s Jason King, deputising for Ross Salmon as sub keeper.
The Loons had the first chance, with Chris Templeman having a shot blocked from close range in the first minute before Ayr’s Alan Forrest fired over from the edge of the box, also sending an effort straight into Rab Douglas’ arms.
Dale Hilson had his shot blocked just inside the area in the 24th minute as Forfar started to look the more threatening to score first.
In the 31st minute Stephen Husband and Gavin Swankie played a one two with Husband and he advanced into the box but his shot was deflected into Hutton’s arms.
Three minutes later Ayr took the lead against the run of play, David Robertson capitalising on a loose ball to play in the Honest Men’s loanee striker Jordan Preston who fired home under pressure.
In the final moments of the first half, Husband sent a long range effort over the bar whilst Alan Forrest nodded past the post for Ayr.
Danny Denholm came on at half time for Swankie and was involved straight away, his ball allowing Hilson to cut the ball into the box, keeper Hutton smothering the ball a split second before Kader could get his leg to the ball.
Four minutes into the second half Iain Campbell saw his long range shot blocked by a stubborn Ayr defence.
Chances were few and far between in the second half, the next opportunity coming in the 65th minute. Less than fifteen seconds after coming on Martyn Fotheringham saw his 25 yard effort crash off the crossbar before being cleared.
In the 72nd minute Adam Blakeman curled the ball into Douglas’ arms whilst Husband fired over again from Fotheringham’s corner.
Husband was involved again in the last minute, swinging a cross in for Templeman but his header was held well by the keeper.
Ayr almost added a second in injury time, with the Loons down to ten men due to Iain Campbell limping off at the same time as the attack, a counter attack ended with Craig Murray on his own in the box but Douglas pulled off a great save.
Ayr United: David Hutton, Nicky Devlin, Adam Blakeman, Peter Murphy, Scott McKenna, Jon Paul McGovern, Craig Murray, David Robertson (Robbie Crawford 61), Jordan Preston (Ryan Donnelly 82), Alan Forrest (Craig Beattie 53), Michael Donald.
Subs not used: Brian Gilmour, Morgyn Neill, Craig McCracken, Shaun Newman (gk)
Forfar Athletic: Rab Douglas, Michael Travis (Gavin Malin 80), Iain Campbell, Stuart Malcolm, Darren Dods, Derek Young, Omar Kader (Martyn Fotheringham 64), Stephen Husband, Chris Templeman, Gavin Swankie (Danny Denholm 46), Dale Hilson.
Subs not used: James Dale, Andrew Steeves, Mark Baxter, Ross Salmon (gk)