“You have to
be more positive,” said the Master Plumber to the Wing Centre as they drove
along the A82 in pursuit of enlightenment. “Shinty has continued over the years
despite all its difficulties. Just like the Games. The last thing it needs is
someone being depressed about it: that will just make it worse…”
Centre had been ranting about something he saw in the Courier. Piles of money
was being promised for sports facilities at the Bught - a velodrome, a rugbydrome,
a tennisdrome- but he did not read anything about a shintydrome! It worried him
that Inverness would lose its outside Bught pitch to a caravan park- and that
there was no word of doing up the old wooden shinty stand at the very home of
the native sport. How could the Camanachd Association have let that go by
without a cheep? When you needed them, where were all the Councillors who had
drunk the free Glenmorangie in the past and eaten the Marine Harvest smoked salmon
vol-au-vents more recently?
was Donald Stewart when you needed him?
Plumber was not impressed. “I’m too busy living in the here and now to worry
about existential problems especially when they are concerned with shinty. Things
will work out. After all Highlanders couldn’t make up their minds whether to
spell their names Macdonald or MacDonald. And even then they were never sure if
it was Mc or Mac. What happened? Nothing. They still all got called up for the
First War and bit the dust in equal numbers with or without a capital. Both
teams won on Saturday - why don’t we talk about that?”
And so the
conversation in the van turned to the fact that Iain Macleod’s bunch of kids
had crossed the watershed to take on a Lochcarron/Lochbroom select and managed
to come back with two points. One goal scored but two points granted.
out that Dunk Achtuie got the goal and that a description had been given that implied
it was a fabulous strike. Cairn Urquhart had fired a shot across the field from
some distance out and Dunk had seemingly stuck up his stick, guided the ball on
to the oxter of a passing guillemot from whence it rebounded, confusing Lochcarron
goalkeeper Peter Mackenzie and ended up in the net. It was a goal that will live for ever in
the annals of Glen shinty lore.
At the other
end Glen keeper David MacFadyen had a couple of excellent early saves before
turning acrobatic in order to save a screamer from Gregor Cushnie. Lochcarron put
in plenty effort but full back Paul Mackintosh stood firm supported by James Hurwood,
Lachie Smith and Liam Robertson. The rest of the lads in front also had to put
in a shift because notwithstanding their present predicament some of the Carranachs
have plenty experience at a reasonably exalted level. From a Glen point of view
the game was notable not only for the inclusion of three youngsters-Finlay
Robertson, Ryan Porter and Jamie Maclennan- but also for the return to Glen
colours of Andrew Young.
Inveraray the first team without John Barr managed to win 2-0 in a match which
the Wing Centre had considered before-hand to be a difficult contest. The fact
that the A82 was blocked by a boulder and the lads had to make a detour round by
Inverness and the south shore only added to the pressure. It turned out all
right in the end though as always there was a price to pay: Euan Lloyd tweaked
a hamstring and had to come off. He also got himself booked as did Ewan Brady though
neither fared as badly as Euan MacMurdo who picked up a straight red and a two
game rest. You have to wonder what ref Billy Wotherspoon has against boys who
are called Euan/Ewan.
were without David MacPherson as he was due to run the Barcelona Marathon in
aid of the Beatson Charity the following day. They were also missing John
Kennedy and Garry Macpherson which tends to suggest that they were not liable
to perform at the highest so the fact that John Barr had to serve a one match
ban for a points accumulation carried forward from the end of last season was
never quite as significant as it might have been. The Glen went ahead 4 minutes
before the break when Lewis MacLennan fired a dipping 20 yard shot in from the
right which was stopped by Inveraray keeper Graham MacPherson. However the ball
got caught up underneath his feet and Fraser Heath ran in to knock the ball
over the line from only a yard out.
the win 15 minutes from time when Heath got his second after some superb
passing and movement involving the whole of the Glen forward line. Heath pushed
the ball to James MacPherson on the left, around 25 yards from goal. MacPherson
slipped the ball back to the forward-running Heath and he flicked the ball over
his marker, who slipped, and this allowed the Scotland U21 international time
to volley the ball into the net to make it 2-0.* (This description was pinched
from the Skye website which is by far the most reliable source to pinch things
from- and the Wing Centre of all people should know this)
All said and
done, it was a fine result and it certainly made the four hour journey back up
the A82 a little more bearable.
sees both Glen sides face up to Kinlochshiel and with them both being somewhat
shorthanded it will be a tricky afternoon for the red and blacks particularly
up at Kirkton where there is for the first time in ages a full and fit squad.
go,” said the Master Plumber, “getting all down about it. Our lot are as good
they believed it”, said the Wing Centre.
of Fadgy has been captured by Garry Mack, El Presidente ;the rest have been
composed by Sheena Lloyd. Thanks to both.