A small band of the Livi faithful made the long trip into the unknown of the Highland League to face a Forres side that finished mid table last season. This game was to be the first real outing for the rebuilt Lions side and the combination of an unfamiliar ground and strange faces in the little used red shirts led to a slightly surreal feel about the opening stages.
John Millar led the side out into battle and the faithful quickly struck up banter with new boys Marko Rajamaki and 'Robbo'. Livingston kicked off and quickly won the first corner of the game their intentions were clear when Frank Conway shot just wide from the corner.
The scoring was opened after just three minutes when Forres centre half Martin Murphy was forced to head over his own bar. Jimmy Boyle took the resulting corner and Dave Bingham powered home a header. It took another 15 minutes to double the advantage when Paul Deas powered home a McPhee lay off.
Grant McMartin replaced Jimmy Boyle and Marko Rajamaki increased the goal count to three with a stunning solo effort.
Forres' Gary Robertson forced Scotland U21 keeper Neil Alexander into an excellent save before McPhee was twice denied at the other end.
Bingham added number four with a cheeky chip on the half hour and John Robertson drove home number five from 25yds in first half stoppage time. After the restart Jim Sherry (twice) and McPhee again came close before Bingham completed his hat trick on 52 minutes. McPhee the deservedly opened his account with a 20yd rocket to take the visiting support to seventh heaven. Bingham and Robertson hit the inside of the post and the bar respectively before Forres got a consolation.
Forres pulled one back from the spot with five minutes to go which was converted by Charlie Brown. Gordon Forrest replaced Jim Sherry and quickly made a contribution setting up McPhee to complete the scoring after some determined running.
It is difficult if not impossible to pick out a man of the match but having been tied up, blindfolded and threatened and my neck forced onto the block to name one the accolade goes to Marko Rajamaki.