Dundee penalised Dunfermline on Championship opening night as two Danny Johnson spotkicks secured what had seemed an unlikely draw.
The Dens men appeared to be down and out at East End Park before they dragged themselves back thanks to Johnson’s double.
The first half was dominated by the hosts, with former Dundee United man Ryan Dow enjoying himself as he slammed home the opener on 13 minutes.
Dow then placed the ball on the head of teammate Kevin Nisbet for the second on 35 minutes.
However, Dundee got a goal back from the spot right on half-time when the ball struck Dow on the arm and Johnson coolly converted.
He scored another penalty on 75 minutes, which was disputed by the home side. It was the striker’s third goal in two games so he didn’t care.
The Pars had made just the one alteration to the team that beat East Kilbride so convincingly in the Betfred Cup, with Kyle Turner replaced by Lewis McCann.
The Dark Blues were unchanged from the side that kicked off their home success against Inverness last Sunday.
The sun was shining on the stadium as the teams emerged from the tunnel. The away end was packed with the 1,400-plus supporters who had travelled down the M90.
Former United man Paul Paton blasted a shot wide for the hosts as the action got under way.
With four minutes on the clock, it was Dundee who almost grabbed an early lead.
It took a terrific save from home goalkeeper Ryan Scully to keep out a header from Josh Meekings after the defender got on the end of a Paul McGowan freekick.
With Dow getting joy up the right, he was pulled down by Meekings just outside the corner of the box and the Dens skipper was booked for his trouble.
The home team were up for this and it was the Pars who grabbed the lead on 13 minutes.
It wasn’t a surprise that the dangerous Dow, who had been getting pelters from the Dundee fans due to his Tannadice connection, was the man to hit the target.
He had Nisbet to thank for teeing him up, with the perfect cutback after the former Raith player had capitalised on Dundee defender Jordon Forster’s inability to control the ball in the right-back position.
Dow gleefully slammed his shot low past keeper Jack Hamilton to make it 1-0.
The same player led the Dens defence a merry dance on 19 minutes, slicing right through before Hamilton saved his cutback that was meant for Nisbet.
At the other end, Jordan McGhee sent a freekick high and wide for Dundee on 23 minutes before the Pars’ Tom Beadling was booked for going in late on Meekings.
Dunfermline created another decent chance when Dow pinged the ball forward to Nisbet and his cutback flew right across the face of goal. Lewis Martin’s deep cross was then met by Nisbet but he could only head down and by the post.
The Fifers were in control and it was not a shock when they went two up on 35 minutes.
It was another bad goal to lose as far as the Dens men were concerned and another bit of fabulous football if you were a home fan.
Once again, Dow found himself with the ball at his feet on the right wing and he nonchalantly chipped a beautiful cross to the far post.
Open golf champion Shane Lowry couldn’t have done any better and the ball sailed over Hamilton and was met by Nisbet, who nodded into an empty net.
The visitors were all at sea and they came within a few inches of being 3-0 down when Nisbet swerved a shot against their bar with the outside of his foot. It rebounded to Josh Coley but he blasted wide.
Out of the blue, Dundee were handed a glorious chance to get back into the game when they were awarded a penalty in the final minute of the half.
There seemed to be little danger when Cammy Kerr’s cross bounced in front of Dow inside his own box but the ball struck the Par’s arm on the way up and referee Greg Aitken went by the letter of the law.
Up stepped Johnson with a fine spotkick to make it 2-1 at the break.
Despite that boost, Dundee manager James McPake made two adjustments to his team at the break. Off went Meekings and Andrew Nelson and on came Josh Todd and Declan McDaid.
There was a harsh booking for Coley when he collided with Kerr after the ball hit Dundee defender McGhee on the arm inside the box but no spotkick was awarded.
The visitors had looked a better bet since the break and they won a freekick just outside the area after good skill by Todd. Dunfermline’s Lee Ashcroft was booked for the foul and the setpiece was wasted by Johnsonas he hit the wall.
The Pars made their first change on the hour, with Matthew Todd taking the place of Coley, then Josh Edwards came on for McCann.
Dundee were having a real go now and they somehow pulled themselves level on 75 minutes.
Once again, it came from the spot and once again Johnson slammed his kick home. The home players were furious at ref Aitken, who decided Ashcroft had fouled Johnson as he made his way to goal. There seemed to be some contact but you could understand Dunfermline’s dismay.
McGhee volleyed over from the edge of the box three minutes from time as Dundee looked for a winner but an entertaining contest stayed all square.
Dunfermline: Scully, Comrie, Martin, Murray, Ashcroft, Beadling, Dow (Ryan 86), Nisbet, Paton, Coley (M. Todd 60), McCann (Edwards 69). Subs not used: Gill, Lang, Morrison, Allan.
Dundee: Hamilton, Kerr, McGhee, Forster, Meekings (J. Todd 46), Byrne, Nelson (McDaid), McGowan, Johnson, Robertson, Marshall. Subs not used: Ferrie, Moore, Cameron, Mulligan, Cunningham.
Referee: Greg Aitken.