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'I'm scoring goals so I'm happy': Kyle Lafferty nets quickfire hat-trick as Kilmarnock beat Stenhousemuir in Scottish Cup

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Kyle Lafferty has been back in the goals since joining Kilmarnock in February (Andrew Milligan/PA)

Kyle Lafferty has been back in the goals since joining Kilmarnock in February (Andrew Milligan/PA)

PA

Kyle Lafferty has been back in the goals since joining Kilmarnock in February (Andrew Milligan/PA)

Kyle Lafferty struck a hat-trick as Kilmarnock eased into the Scottish Cup fourth round with a 4-0 victory over Stenhousemuir at Ochilview.

The striker bagged his treble in a 19-minute period either side of half-time before exiting with his job well and truly done.

He wasn't able to score for Northern Ireland during the international break, stretching his scoreless run for his country that has been ongoing since November 2016.

International boss Ian Baraclough, bemoaning his team's general lacking of scoring prowess - they've scored only seven goals in his 11 games in charge - had predicted that his players would rediscover their shooting boots on return to their clubs.

And so it proved for Lafferty, who has now scored six goals in his last three games for Killie after being brought in as Tommy Wright's first signing.

The striker himself admitted to a lack of composure in the green shirt but in blue and white stripes, things couldn't be more different.

"It's always nice to go home with the match ball," he said. "I'm playing football and I'm scoring goals so I'm happy. I've given the team a slight lift but the quality was already there."

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Wright has always tipped Lafferty to become a regular scorer for Killie and is delighted with his signing's form.

"We dominated the game because of how quickly we moved the ball. If we provide Kyle with the service he'll score goals," said the boss.

Substitute George Oakley notched his first Kilmarnock goal late on as Wright's side scored four for the second game running.

The visitors set the tone early on and Mitch Pinnock, Lafferty, Kirk Broadfoot, Rory McKenzie and Chris Burke all came close in the opening quarter.

Killie defender Zech Medley went off on the half-hour mark following a clash of heads with Mark McGuigan, who played on with a bandage until half-time. Zeno Ibsen Rossi came on for the Ayrshire side.

The breakthrough came in the 37th minute after Jonathon Tiffoney was adjudged to have pushed Lafferty in the box and the Northern Ireland international despatched the penalty.

Pinnock was denied by home goalkeeper Paddy Martin before McKenzie set up Lafferty to finish in first-half stoppage-time.

Lafferty headed off the inside of a post and Broadfoot nodded over from two yards before the hat-trick came in the 56th minute when the striker converted from close range following good work from Burke.

The goalscorer was replaced by Oakley five minutes later.

On-loan Hibernian goalkeeper Martin pulled off a couple saves from long-range Aaron Tshibola efforts before Oakley netted in the 87th minute.

Tshibola's pass put him one-on-one and the former Hamilton striker beat a defender and finished.


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