weekend has been a marginally better one for the Wing Centre and the Glen: the
loss of two points to Kyles was an unnecessary self-inflicted wound but at least that was balanced up by two
points from the contest against Glengarry. By all accounts that win was a
little fortunate. So it all evens out in the end-doesn’t it? Let’s hope so
against Kyles drew a reasonable number of spectators but truth to tell the
Treasurer was a little disappointed with the turn out. The thing about some
Premier shinty matches is that because of the length of the journey, you don’t
really get many visiting spectators. Yes it was cold-yes Lovat were playing
Newtonmore over the hill-yes Ross County were playing Celtic over the river
after that, but a team like Kyles, Camanachd Cup holders, needs to be a bigger
draw in the village. It just wasn’t as big a deal as it should have been. The
fault for that doesn’t belong to Kyles :the blame lies in this Glen.
What did the
spectators get for their money? Actually a good, competitive game in which both
sides more or less nullified each other. It was probably a game for the insider
rather than the thrill seeking spectator though a couple of wee flare-ups can
probably testify to the closeness of the encounter. Whatever- everything was
more or less well handled by ref Innes Wood - and he got the time of the goal
right (23 minutes) though the official calculation given implies five minutes
more Kyles pressure than there was.
maintained their traditional 2-2 formation and it served them well in as much
as they mounted a series of attacks at the Glen defence who held them at bay
reasonably comfortably because each back stuck to his man and went with the
runner. Where the difference lay at this early stage was that the Kyles wing
–centres, especially Robbie Macleod, picked up the balls in midfield and played
a higher percentage through than did their Glen opposite numbers. For all that
early energy Kyles had only two strikes at goal-one a drive by Dunky Kerr from
a wide angle and the other a superb strike from Ewan Campbell which was saved
by Stuart Mackintosh. At the other end there was less energy- and the Kyles
defence gave little away though Neale Reid had a couple of attempts but they
did not trouble Kenny Macdonald.
goal was nicely taken but before Ewan Campbell laid the ball across for Roddy
Macdonald to score from there was more than enough time for the Glen to put it
by for a corner. They did not-and so it has to go down as preventable as all
three of last week’s were (all five- if you count the Glen goals)
goal Kyles’ attacks became fewer either as the Glen players picked up their effort in the middle or the Kyles guys lost their initial focus.
half saw much more Glen pressure as they pushed for an equaliser down towards
the shop end- and, while some passages of play were neat enough at times, there
was little end product in the shape of shots on goal. Kyles offered little in
the second half though they picked up their ideas when Roddy Macdonald who had
suffered a face injury came back on. In the end nothing much changed and Glen
lost both points to a single goal. Frustration was the watchword for Glenners
going home at the end of match.
If you had a look at some of the snaps from the day you might think that but the
least said soonest mended. Suffice to say both players- hurt in different
incidents - came back on to the field after rest and treatment : there was
nothing malicious in either, though everyone is protective of their own as is
showing Kyles are a good side- but Newtonmore are still the side to beat,
though it is looking as if the Crofter Kids from beyond Glen Convinth are the
ones to bet the “round the field” collection on this year.
need to start scoring-but no way is this other than a very competitive league.
Then it was like that last year and the sides relegated -Bute and Kilmallie – were
good sides too.
second team outing, Glen picked up two points at Glengarry thanks to goals by
Calum Miller and Iain Macleod.
To be truthful
the youngsters, trained on the Drum Astro, found the ‘Garry surface hard
to adapt to. It was like playing on cobbles and that affected everybody's
hitting right from the off and the boys struggled to get themselves into the
game. As the match went on Glengarry created the majority of the chances and if
it were not for some good defending and excellent shot stopping from keeper
Cameron Maclennan Glen would have been at least a couple of goals behind by half time. As it was Glen scored just before half time
through Calum Miller who worked hard to create room for himself before hitting
the net with a fine shot.
The second half followed much the same pattern as the first with
Glengarry creating the better of the chances. The Glenurquhart midfield failed
to ignite and the forwards had few shots on target. Eventually Glengarry
equalised half way through the second half.
They continued to pressurise the game but Cameron Maclennan pulled off
several brilliant saves to keep Glen in it. David Girvan and Stuart Reid both
had fine games in defence and were able to use their experience to break down
play and clear their lines. James Hurwood also played well as did Ross
Macdiarmid and Brad Dickson when they came on in the second half. In the end,
victory came through the team’s fighting spirit which brought its reward when
Iain MacLeod scored the winner after latching on to a good cross from Ross
The positive aspect of this game is the fact that the spirit of the side
is excellent though the absence of the injured Drew Maclennan is a noticeable
gap .Three wins from four puts the Glen juniors in a better position than they
were last year at the same stage of the season-which cannot be bad.
As the weather improves and the pitches get firmer, performances hopefully
will continue to get better. Perhaps this will be the year the Glenners will
win that elusive Sutherland Cup. Definitely-maybe!