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IN-FORM PORTS FORWARD STILL FINDING HIS FEET

Gary Twigg scored both goals on Saturday as Portadown defeated Dungannon Swifts by 2-1 in the Irish Cup fifth-round tie. Pic by David Maginnis.

Gary Twigg scored both goals on Saturday as Portadown defeated Dungannon Swifts by 2-1 in the Irish Cup fifth-round tie. Pic by David Maginnis.

GARY Twigg has scored three goals in his first two appearances for Portadown - but the January signing feels he is just getting started at Shamrock Park.

The former Shamrock Rovers striker grabbed the only goal on his debut as the Ports defeated Donegal Celtic by 1-0 in the league. Twigg followed up that dream start with a weekend brace in the Irish Cup defeat of Dungannon Swifts.

Although delighted with his introduction to Irish League football, Twigg considers his game still short of crucial match sharpness.

“I couldn’t have asked for much more than two wins, one giving us vital league points and the other getting us into the next round of the Irish Cup,” said Twigg. “As a striker you always want to get off the mark at a new club as quickly as possible but the goals have been a nice bonus on top of two wins by the team.

“No-one could put as much pressure on me as I put on myself so I am pleased with how things have started but feel there is plenty more to come.

“The months of training before my official debut certainly helped me adjust so when it came to that first match I was feeling really comfortable.

“Although the games against Donegal Celtic and Dungannon Swifts have not been classics in terms of great football, I have seen enough of our squad to know the quality on the books.

“My game is not about picking the ball up 30 yards from goal and heading off on a mazy dribble.

“However, as a striker you still need that match sharpness to gain an advantage on the defenders and sometimes that half-yard can make all the difference.

“We have the players that will certainly provide the assists and with every match I am feeling more tuned in to the rest of the squad.”

Despite Twigg’s realistic assessment of his opening few weeks in a Portadown jersey, statistics confirm the belief of his manager, Ronnie McFall, that the Scottish striker is a natural finisher.

Twigg will next turn his sights on the league leaders, with Cliftonville coming to town tomorrow (Saturday).

“It will be tough as Cliftonville are reaping the rewards for working hard and having good players,” said Twigg. “However, results went in our favour during the week with Coleraine and Glentoran losing so now we sit four points away from both rival clubs.

“Although I may still be short of match sharpness, it doesn’t matter whether the Cliftonville game is my first or 10th for Portadown, you always look forward to the big fixtures.

“We want to keep those three points at our place this weekend.”

Kick-off will be 3 o’clock at Shamrock Park, with home fans reminded to enter via the Rectory Park turnstiles.

 
 
 

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