There is a real lack of desire and commitment at the moment and players need to start stepping up to the mark, making themselves available week in, week out.

What was particularly disappointing about what happened last Friday night  was that Down hadn't played a game in over six weeks. In years gone by, players would have been champing at the bit to play. It appears times have changed.

Down face Portrush away this Saturday and it's vital every senior player makes himself available for selection. The club needs the support from every player right now and no one must be found wanting.

Back to last Friday night and it was always going yo be an uphill struggle for the home side as they were two players short.

Heavy snow fell during parts of the game but it wasn't severe enough to force the players off. It was bitterly cold however.

James Erskine produced a timely tackle in the second minute of the game while 13 minutes later home 'keeper Carl Mullan produced a fine save to prevent Mike Scott firing the visitors ahead.

A minute later however Ryan Garland fired home what was the first of his four goals on the night after he was given too much time and space inside the penalty area.

The PSNI dominated the next passage of play and while they conjured up several shots, none of them were on target.

Garland scored his second goal of the afternoon in the 25th minute when he finished off a sweeping breakaway after Down had lost possession at the other end  of the park.

Ian McIlkenny then set up George Tomlinson, but with only Mullan to beat, the PSNI striker fired wide of the post. Brian Hagan then went close for Down, only for the visitors to mount another swift counter attack which resulted in Garland completing his hat-trick.

Home skipper Jeremy McCready, who was disappointed he couldn't prevent the PSNI taking the lead in the first half, produced a great tackle to deny  Garland a certain goal within two minutes of the restart.

But less than 60 seconds later the PSNI led 4-0 when McIlkenny converted during a goalmouth scramble. There was no way back for Down.

Gavin Ringland's short corner strike flew past the wrong side of the PSNI post in the 45th minute, while four minutes later the home side pulled a goal back. Ringland and Erskine combined well for the ball to be worked to Mark Elliott and he made no mistake from close in.

The PSNI took a 5-1 lead in the 51st minute with Garland grabbing his fourth before Ringland again fired wide at the other end. Erskine then found himself with just the 'keeper to beat in the 63rd minute but David Stewart denied him with a smart save.

With two minutes to go Chris Ferguson made it 5-2 when he scored following a short corner, while in the final minute of the game, Mark Graham fired wide when well placed in front of the PSNI goal.