A LATE George Bonnar winner handed Armadale Thistle a vital win in Premier League survival fight.
The Dale were locked in a goalless battle with fellow relegation-threatened Dundee Downfield before Bonnar bagged the winner to keep their hopes of staying in the division alive. Both sides were reluctant to commit players forward in the early stages.
And with defenders resorting to long balls over the top, both keepers had little difficulty to contend with.
Dale finished the first half strongly with a Robbie Feenie drive being deflected wide before George Bonner was denied by the keeper.
But the sides went in level.
Armadale enjoyed the best of the possession after the interval but were denied a penalty on 65 minutes when the ball looked to have been deflected on to the post by a Dundee defender's hand.
Dale breathed a sigh of relief however five minutes later when a Dundee strike was ruled off side by the linesman.
The tackles were now getting fierce as nerves set in and with 15 minutes to go, Dale's Jamie Valentine was stretchered off with a bad knee injury.
Downfield were then reduced to 10 men when Nicky Deuchars was handed a second yellow card for persistent fouling.
Armadale continued to look the more dangerous and got their reward when Bonnar latched on to a loose ball in the box to fire a fierce shot through a crowded box and into the net.
Armadale's relief was obvious as Bonnar was mobbed by his team-mates.
The Dale survived the tense remaining minutes despite a Lewis Milton red card for a reckless tackle.
The Dale now have two games left to save their Premier League lives.
The second-bottom outfit are away to basement boys Arniston Rangers this weekend in a clash that both sides desperately need to win. If Armadale prevail, they then take on fierce local rivals and Premier League table-toppers Broxburn the following weekend.