Raith Rovers have quietly put together a good run in the Scottish Championship and this week turn their attention to two cup competitions.
Ian Murray’s side are on the verge of the SPFL Trust Trophy final before they test their credentials versus Premiership opposition in the Scottish Cup.
Dens Park is the venue for Wednesday night’s semi-final against a stuttering Dundee that still have their sights on the Championship title.
Gary Bowyer’s men have won two of the three meetings between the clubs so far this season, with the most recent fixture ending in a 1-1 draw.
Rovers will fancy their chances, taking a 10-match unbeaten run into the game, but will be short on numbers.
Down to the bare bones
Jamie Gullan and Lewis Vaughan are the latest injury casualties and are set to miss out, while Scott McGill and Grieg Young are cup-tied.
“It’s a tough one to balance out,” Murray told Courier Sport, “because we’ve got a big game on Saturday – we don’t have a huge squad.
“We’re lower on numbers than we were on Saturday, but we don’t get too bothered about it.
“It’s an opportunity for others – Sam Stanton is back, Connor McBride is doing really well, Kieran Ngwenya is ready to come in.
McBride’s winner versus Arbroath:
“It’s not ideal but it is an opportunity for players to get a good game under their belts, live on TV in a good stadium and hopefully a good crowd.”
“We’ve had great backing this season – we had good numbers again up (for the win at) Arbroath and managed to reward them.”
After that attention turns to Motherwell in the fifth round of the Scottish Cup.
Update on Vaughan and Gullan
The Rovers manager hopes to have Gullan and Vaughan back in his squad for that one after they picked up minor hamstring injuries in the previous match.
Those absences leaves Raith in a similar situation to their 1-0 win over Queen’s Park in the quarter-final of the SPFL Trust Trophy, when they had just 12 fit outfield players.
“The best case at the moment is that Lewis will be touch and go for Saturday, he definitely won’t be ready for Wednesday,” said Murray.
“We’re slightly more optimistic for Hammer (Gullan) – he’ll be ready for Saturday but definitely won’t be ready for tomorrow.
“We’re low on bodies but hopefully it’s not going to be a long-term thing.
“If it’s longer-term then we’ll look at the loan market but, at the moment, we’ll go with what we have.
“Sometimes, when you’re in a situation like this, backs against the wall in terms of players, others step up – and that’s been the case so far.
“I think a wee break from the league helps everybody but going into these games on the back of a good away win is great.”