Kilmarnock 2 Dunfermline 0 as Ayrshire side edge closer to Championship title

This was truly a KO performance (that’s K for Kyle and O for Oli) that saw the deadly scoring duo defeat the lowly Fifers to very much keep alive Kilmarnock’s hopes of winning the Championship.

It was arguably one of the best performances of the season from Derek McInnes’ side, and but for a series of spectacular saves from goalkeeper Jakub Stolarczyk, the scoreline could have been so very much more.

There wasn’t really a weakness in the side, and right from the first whistle they set about their business in positive fashion.

The Pars keeper produced his first spectacular save with only two minutes played, the goalie diving high to his left to divert Blair Alston’s powerful shot.

Barely eight minutes later he was on the spot to keep out a Kyle Lafferty header with Brad Lyons crashing the rebound off the crossbar.

But there was nothing Stolarczyk could do to stop Killie taking the lead in 25 minutes, Lafferty latching on to an Alston assist to stroke the ball into the net.

Kilmarnock’s Kyle Lafferty celebrates after making it 1-0 during a cinch Championship match between Kilmarnock and Dunfermline Athletic

Killie continued to dominate as the first half progressed, with the visitors struggling to gain any sort of foothold in the game.

In the 32nd minute the Rugby Park side were awarded a free kick in almost exactly the same spot as Lafferty had scored from two weeks earlier against Partick Thistle, but any hopes of a repeat of that disappeared when his shot took a deflection off a Pars defender for a corner.

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Six minutes later Ash Taylor had a chance to double Killie’s lead when he found himself clear a few yards from goal, but his soft attempt was saved easily by the Dunfermline goalkeeper.

Stolarszyk continued to frustrate the home players and fans after the break, first pulling off a double save from Shaw and then in the 61st minute showing his agility to deny Stephen McGinn’s powerful effort.

On 67 minutes he again thwarted Shaw who created space to fire in what looked like a certain goal, but the striker didn’t have to wait too long for the clinching goal.

Fraser Murray’s corner from the right was met by the striker and he diverted a neat header into the Dunfermline net.

Killie were well in control at this stage, as they had been for most of the game, and it was added on time before Zach Hemming had his first real save of the match, dealing with an angled shot from substitute Bobby Kamwa.

The points secured, Killie made a flurry of substitutions in the final few minutes before the final whistle sounded.

An impressive performance from the home side, and with only three fixtures remaining, a return to the top flight at the first attempt is very much in their own hands.

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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