NEILSTON co-boss Chris Cameron was proud of his sides performance despite being narrowly beaten by Premier Division opposition in the First Round of the South Challenge Cup on Saturday.

Beith edged out The Farmers Boys 2-1 at Bellsdale Park to progress to the next round.

Jordan Duffy had given the home side the lead before Kieran Brophy equalised for Neilston, however Lawrence McMahon’s strike proved to be the winning goal.

Cameron set up his team to go and have a go despite being up against it and he hopes the taste of playing top tier opposition is a sign of things to come for Neilston.

Speaking to Barrhead Sport, he said: “Obviously we’re disappointed to be out of the cup. You want to go as far as you can but we couldn’t have any complaints over how the lads played and applied themselves.

“We were very good and probably shaded it over the 90 minutes. I didn’t think there was much between the teams at all.

“Beith are a top 6 Premier League team and used to competing for leagues and cups so we said to the boys this will let us see where we are.

“We knew we were big underdogs but we went and had a go. I wanted the boys to believe, and I think they did, they were just unfortunate things didn’t quite go our way.”

Duffy gave the Bellsdale Park side the lead midway through the first-half after a powerful run and low cross to the back post was turned home by the Beith number 3.

Neilston equalised ten minutes later when Brophy bulleted home a header from Cammy Haddow’s corner.

The second period was 15 minutes old when a quick move from Beith was finished off by McMahon, however there was a stroke of luck as his shot took a big deflection off Cammy Haddow and completely wrong-footed Hay in the Neilston goal.

Cameron’s troops hunted for an equaliser however a wayward effort from Darren Kennedy was the closest they came to forcing extra-time.

League action returns to Brig O’Lea this weekend when Larkhall Thistle are the visitors, and Cameron is targeting three points after bringing Drumchapel United’s unbeaten run to an end last week.

He said: “We said to the boys that there is no use winning the big games and dropping points to teams that are near the foot of the table. It’s a game at home we need to go and look to be winning.”