HELENSBURGH had a dramatic David Allan hat-trick to thank at the weekend as they battled back from a goal down to snatch an injury-time winner and beat Boswell AFC 4-3 to stretch their winning run to eight successive games.

Burgh boss Sam Gemmell made just one change from last week’s winning starting XI with Dougie Black replacing young Caleb Phipps.

That didn’t seem to impact Helensburgh’s momentum, however, as they started brightly with a host of chances in the opening stages as David Sinclair and Allan tested the Boswell keeper who did well to keep it level.

The visitor’s early pressure paid off with just 10 minutes on the clock when top-scorer Brooks Tadlock won a duel in the centre of the park before linking up well with Keith Thomas whose defence splitting pass found Allan with an abundance of space in the area and the striker duly obliged, stroking home for the deserved opener.

Helensburgh failed to turn their early dominance into a two goal lead as they fell back and allowed the home side to start pinging dangerous balls into their defensive area.

And it was one of those long balls over the top that led to the equaliser with Boswell making the most of the sloppy defending to slot past Paul Cavanna.

The first-half quickly turned into a scrappy affair after that with both teams struggling to assert themselves on a match that was there for the taking.

Tadlock was the bright spark for Burgh and was directly involved as Gemmell’s side restored their lead moments before the break with Stuart Bailey on hand to dispatch a spot-kick after Tadlock was hauled down in the area.

Typical of the match, the scoring wasn’t done there as more lacklustre defending saw the hosts level right on the stroke of half-time.

Things went from bad to worse for Burgh after the break as they found themselves on the verge of their first league defeat since December when Boswell got their noses in front.

Direct from kick-off, Allan found himself through on goal only to see his effort crash back off the crossbar right to the feet of a Boswell defender who lumped it up the field with Russell Makeham forced to bring a pacey striker down in the box with the home side slotting away the resultant penalty with aplomb.

Staring defeat in the face, the Burgh boys dug deep to mount an impressive fight back.

A threat all afternoon, it was Allan was levelled for Burgh 55 minutes in after a host of chances went a begging.

Both sides huffed and puffed in search of the winner but it looked like they would have to settle for a point a piece as the referee signalled for injury time. This saw Burgh up the tempo with Bailey picking out Allan who coolly curled it beyond the keeper for an incredible hat-trick to keep his side’s impressive winning run intact.

Burgh manager Sam Gemmell agreed it was a struggle, telling Advertiser Sport: “We were in full control of the game until we scored then we lost our way in the middle part of the game. Credit to all the lads that played as they showed great determination to get us back in the game and then go onto win it.”

Squad: Paul Cavanna, Steven Martin, Brooks Tadlock, Daniel Johns, Douglas Black, Callum Dodds, Marc McNeil, David Wilkie, David Sinclair, David Allan, Stuart Bailey, Del Park, Keith Thomas, Russell Makeham.