FROM the first week of the WoSFL season just gone, what is the abiding memory that transcended all the others and left supporters of the game thirsting for more?

The character shown by Drumchapel United’s 3-2 curtain-raiser comeback win away to Petershill? So-called no-hopers Bonnyton Thistle’s stunning, against-all-odds 3-1 victory over Pollok? Or could it be the very real signs of Arthurlie’s re-emergence as a force in the game at this level after racking up an impressive three wins out of three Conference League A outings?

Well no such dilemma is existing down at the Tail O’The Bank, where supporters of Greenock Juniors can be found joyfully dancing along to the tune being played on the'old fiddle' that is their seemingly evergreen striker James Marks.

He’s at an age when taking more of a back seat role or a bit-part coaching post is considered the norm but Slick (as he’s affectionately been called in various dressing rooms down through the years, most notably Largs Thistle, Arthurlie and Kilbirnie Ladeside) has all but torn up the script for  long-in-the-tooth frontmen by sensationally netting hat-tricks in two of his side’s three games to date.

The latest trio arrived in last Saturday’s 4-0 besting of Glasgow United (Ben  Docherty weighing in with the other counter) following on from him memorably bagging all the Greenock goals in their 3-2 opening day win over long-standing rivals Port Glasgow.

Unsurprisingly, Slick is set to be one of the first names entered onto gaffer Thomas Molloy’s team sheet ahead of tonight’s trip up to Glasgow to take on an Ashfield side motivated by the twin prospects of taking the undefeated Greenock’s scalp and chalking up their own first win of the season in the process.

The seasoned 'Nock boss said: "James will be 39 on his next birthday so he should be wrapped in cotton wool and only used sparingly, but how can I or assistant manager Shaun Dillon dare to think of leaving him out of our selection thoughts on current form ?

“He’s absolutely flying with his every touch looking like it could end up in the rigging yet even without the fantastic goals return, James has been  playing out of his skin in every game up to now and causing opposition defences all manner of problems.

“His movement and leading the line qualities are a lesson for any young up-and-coming strikers”

Molloy reckons the physical rigours involved with constantly playing Monday/Wednesday league matches are placing huge demands on his side’s dressing room resources.

He revealed: "Even if we did want to rest up James, our injury situation is such that we couldn’t afford to do it.

“We’ve made a decent start in picking up seven points from a possible nine and I would hate to see things unravel but right now we have as many as eight players with various knocks and strains struggling to be passed fit for our games this week.

“Monday nights were always earmarked for light training sessions and working on set-pieces but we simply cannot run the risk of muscle fatigue or strains, so instead they are being used to hold roll-calls and establish what players are available for Wednesday nights. 

“As things stand this week, we know there is a need to bring in several of our Under-20s for the trip up to Saracen Park and it’s going to be touch and go whether we are forced to again call on the younger guys for what is  shaping up as a massive contest against Cambuslang Rangers on  Saturday.”

Among Greenock’s walking wounded are frontman Dylan McLaughlin (hamstring) and defensive cornerstone Gary Fleming (hamstring), as well as highly-regarded winger Mark Alexander (ankle), who hasn‘t trained or played since being injured against Port Glasgow.

Molloy said: "Mark could possibly make the Ashfield game at a push but I’m not sure if throwing him straight back in is the right call to make ahead of  Cambuslang coming here.

“Given the choice, I’d like to have him fully fit for that one but the same goes for all the other guys.”

A top of the table League B clash takes place at McKenna Park where second top St Cadoc's await the visit of surprise frontrunners Ardeer Thistle.

Hoping (along with Greenock) for a falter from one or both of the leading pair are Gartcairn, strongly fancied to pick up all three points away to Royal Albert. But things could be tougher on the road for Renfrew (at Port Glasgow) and Thorniewood United (Carluke Rovers).

Elsewhere in the Conferences, Arthurlie will be out to maintain their 100 percent League A record down at remote Maybole, while a competitive League C derby clash is promised at Keppoch Park where Glasgow Perthshire and Petershill lock horns.

PLAYING  TONIGHT (Kick-off at 7.30pm)

P.D.M Buildbase Premier League
Kilbirnie Ladeside v Auchinleck Talbot, Clydebank v Cumnock, Cumbernauld Utd v Largs Thistle, Rossvale v Irvine Meadow, Beith v Darvel, Rutherglen Glencairn v Pollok, Bonnyton Thistle v Kilwinning Rangers, Troon v Rob Roy, Blantyre Vics v Benburb, Hurlford Utd v Glenafton.

PDM Buildbase Conference League A

Craigmark v Muirkirk, Lugar Boswell v Lesmahagow, Johnstone Burgh v Bellshill Athletic, Whitletts Vics v  Maryhill, Glasgow University v Saltcoats Vics, Forth Wanderers v Girvan, Shotts Bon Accord v Irvine Vics, Maybole v Arthurlie.

PDM Buildbase Conference League B

Glasgow Utd v Dalry Thistle, Ashfield v Greenock, Port Glasgow v  Renfrew,  Kello Rovers v  Newmains Utd, St Cadoc's v Ardeer Thistle, Royal Albert v Gartcairn, Thorniewood Utd v Carluke Rovers.

PDM Buildbase Conference League C

St Roch's v Lanark Utd, Ardrossan Winton Rovers v Neilston, Kilsyth Rangers v Drumchapel Utd, Larkhall Thistle v Yoker Athletic, Wishaw v St Anthony's, Vale of Leven v East Kilbride Thistle, Glasgow Perthshire v Petershill.

PDM Buildbase Division Four

Harmony Row v Campbeltown Pupils (8pm), St Peter's v Glenvale, Harthill Royal v BSC Glasgow, Kilsyth Athletic v Finnart.