Thursday, March 30, 2006

You better believe it- the Skye’s the limit

Glenurquhart 0 Skye 1

How this hurts-and yet we have scored more goals than we have lost. I have taken several days to digest this game and even now I am not sure I still believe the result. Not that I am against Skye and their victory. I only wonder whether perhaps the fact that the Government in its wisdom having removed the tolls on the bridge, actually realised that the Sgiathianaich could afford to bring the whole team to the mainland- and with that defeat us. One more reason for not voting Lib-Dem I suppose.
Let me say that Kenny Macleod’s 57 minute strike from the halfway line was a well hit shot-it rose in the air and found its way in a haphazard fashion into the net. So far out when struck ,I can imagine it was not actually meant. Certainly, young Kenny was delighted with his good fortune and no doubt believes that he did it on purpose: he did not. But rightly it stood.
Let us for the sake of sanity concentrate on the last 20 minutes of this distressing encounter but before doing so acknowledge several points. The absence of Paul Mackintosh was crucial- suffering from flu he could not make an appearance but how little we treasure his strong play and encouraging presence when we do have him I would now say that his presence is a necessity in midfield.
Secondly, how nice a team we are. Several times there were opportunities for our guys to be less reticent with the stick : they didn’t bother. The Skye lads were not so shy. I think it is because in this league we actually have to play a more robust type of shinty and we are not prepared to do it seemingly. That apart for the first half and a good bit of the second Sorley’s wee brothers and Tom Butler had the centre line tied up. They were quick sharp and say what you like about the Skye men they can hit a ball. It is just a pity that so many of the “cool “ guys on that Island are so obsessed with football and their little local leagues instead of the indigenous sport. I would have said population wise they ought to have enough guys to win the Camanachd Cup every year it is competed for.
So to the last 20 minutes….. Neal Reid had left the field. At 14 he was unable to swing the match ,though his ability shone through. Gone too was Ruaraidh Cameron- an excellent talent but without the support to make him effective. Alastair Mackintosh was at Kincraig and therefore had no influence on this game. Arran Macdonald began to impact on the game : his long deep shies and powerful hitting started to make a difference at least in the number of chances we had. Lewis Maclennan hit one too early and it went over the bar. Dave Smart made himself room on the left - what a neat stick player- but the ball went wide. Then in the last minute a superb shy , back off the keeper to John Barr- and he’s put it past the post and I’m throwing the collection bag into the bowling green. How could this happen? I then remember that I have missed plenty myself and also reflect that I was part of a Glen team which was beating Newtonmore 4-1 in a Camanachd Cup match and then went on to lose it : the Newtonmore guys go on to immortality and us-? Well lets hope the present guys realise that there is no future in losing to teams you should have beaten.
I am now thinking we need John Barr as buckshee and Corrigan up front for bits of games at least. I am also thinking that we should harden up and simplify our shinty. Play shinty like Wimbledon‘s crazy gang used to play football. I’m sure guys from Skye will get the simile. Hit every ball on the keeper, charge him and sink the second ball. The sorts of keepers I have seen recently would not handle that-though to be fair last season Fisher, MacKechnie and Kenny MacD would have laughed at such crude play. But this is not last year : we are playing old fashioned shinty on heavy pitches. You cannot carry a ball here. Blairbeg is not the Dell.
Confidence, self-belief, a motivational talk from Jack Black-that is all that is missing here. This is a side which has reached two Balliemore semis back to back and chucked them both away. There has to be more in the tank
Ally Morrison, his father and his son were delighted with the result : I wish them well. Young Naouie struggling to get reception on his mobile after the match-use the Orange network if you seriously want to make a call from Blairbeg- finally got through to DR.
“He can’t believe it,” said Naouie.
Neither could I.

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