Both keepers could have remained in the dressing room for the opening 8 minutes such was the dearth of goal mouth action in this period. The first shot on goal arrived in the 9th minute and it was worth the wait, Sheerin played a clever one-two with Booth then unleashed a fierce shot that Stillie tipped over the bar. Two minutes later Tosh had the ball in the net, but referee Rowbotham adjudged that the keeper had been fouled as he fumbled the ball.
Stillie was left in no man's land in the 19th minute when he came to the edge of his area to clear. Tosh closed him down to force a panic clearance and as the ball fell to Sheerin he tried to lob the ball into the net, but was wide of the target. Zdrilic then went close in the 21st minute when he headed inches wide from a Tosh cross. The Dons finally took a deserved lead in the 23rd minute and you will struggle to see a better worked goal all season. Following a poor clearance from a free kick Sheerin collected the ball on the edge of the box and in a move involving himself, Booth and Zdrilic they passed their way past the Pars defence. It was the Aussie who had the final say when he drilled the ball past a helpless Stillie.
Dunfermline levelled on the half hour mark when Scotland striker, Stevie Crawford, turned Phil McGuire inside out on the right before delivering the ball into the centre where Brewster rose unmarked to bullet a header past Preece. Aberdeen almost regained their advantage two minutes later when a Booth lob was deflected on to the roof of the net. David Zdrilic had picked up a knock and for four minutes Aberdeen tried to bring on Leigh Hinds. Finally after the fourth attempt Mr. Rowbotham allowed the change to take place.
Aberdeen had lost their way by this stage and were looking for inspiration from somewhere to pull this game out of the fire. Unfortunately none was forthcoming and Dunfermline simply closed down the Aberdeen players quickly denying them any time on the ball. In a final roll of the dice Kevin McNaughton replaced Tosh with 16 minutes remaining. Aberdeen now had a strike force of McGuire and Hinds with Muirhead and McNaughton playing in a wide role.
It was McNaughton who nearly found that inspiration in the 85th minute when he hit a sweet shot inches over the bar with Stillie looking beaten. Two minutes later Aberdeen had the ball in the net, but the strike was ruled offside. Deloumeaux had hit a screamer that Stillie could only block. Hinds followed up and the flag was up before Heikkinen fired home.