FOOTBALL can be cruel at times. It's an old cliché but in Sauchie Juniors' case, it really was true on Saturday.

After completely dominating the game for 89 minutes, a goal to the good and the final whistle just minutes away, a Blackburn United smash-and-grab flipped the scoreline and sent the away team home with all three points.

The conditions were horrible, to begin with. Games across the country were being called off and the weather was so bad before the match it wouldn't have been a surprise if this one had been as well.

There couldn't have been a single outfield player on the pitch who didn't slip at least once, and the wind was really playing a part in carrying the ball.

Blackburn must have won the coin toss at the start and so the teams switched halves, but it played into Sauchie's hands. The wind seemed to push the entire team forward and it felt like every time the away keeper kicked the ball up the pitch, it was coming straight back to him and bringing 10 blue shirts with it.

Brian Morgan, recently returned to the club, was pulling the strings in midfield. Every touch was composed, every pass found its man and he was there to win the ball back as well. On a day where the ball could stick or the wind could easily take it away it from you, his composure was a welcome sight and it allowed his team to get forward or make the move, knowing the pass would be coming.

The brightest spark of the half came when Sauchie's Danny Smith took the ball on the left wing and drifted past three men. After dribbling through and leaving them helpless, he angled a curling shot towards the far-post.

Whether it was going in or not, it was certainly going to trouble the keeper but a diving Sauchie head got on the end of it and took it away from goal.

The wind was really holding the ball up and kickouts from Blackburn's keeper didn't have the power to beat it. This saw Sauchie breaking up the pitch with ease but they didn't do enough to trouble the keeper or see a reward for their efforts.

A Brian Morgan free kick from 30 yards really gave the keeper something to think about but it went just over the bar. Half-time then came and the score was level, but with Sauchie having such a foothold on the match it seemed like there was only one outcome.

With the teams swapping sides, it was Sauchie's turn to play against the wind; however, the away team couldn't make the most of it. Their game plan had always seemed to be to play the ball long at every opportunity and hope a forward would get on the end of it. It would come to fruition in the game's final moments but before then it just gave Sauchie the ball back time and time again.

Another Morgan free kick, this time a little bit closer to goal, troubled the keeper. Instead of curling it and trying to place it like his last attempt, his long run-up saw him blast the ball towards goal and it took the keeper off the ground as he diverted it away from goal.

Sauchie finally took a well-deserved lead with less than 10 minutes to go. A bouncing ball in the box somehow found its way to Danny Smith. On the half-volley he cut across it excellently and it found the far corner of the net and gave the keeper no chance.

With the minutes ticking by, it looked like Sauchie would finally get their first win of the season. However, on 90 minutes a long Blackburn free kick was headed over Brett Young by Danny Campbell and the visitors levelled the match.

If a win wasn't to be, then the least Sauchie deserved was a draw. But, football is cruel, and it was the 93rd minute when Blackburn's long-ball tactic finally worked.

Blackburn's Jordan Devine got on the end of a long ball and with Young covering his near post, Devine lifted it and it bounced off the far post and in.

With five games played, Sauchie have one point on the board. They play in the Challenge Cup tonight before travelling to high-flying Lothian Thistle HV. Strong performances, and points, are needed.