2021 Shinty Review of the Season – Part 2

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It’s time for part 2 of our review of the 2021 shinty season.

July 2021

Shinty supporters were in attendance for the first time this season when Kingussie met Skye Camanachd in the cottages.com MacTavish Cup first round and it was the Kings fans who went home the happier following a 4-0 win with Savio Genini, Thomas Borthwick twice and James Falconer all scoring.

Fort William also had fans back as they defeated neighbours Kilmallie 6-1 at An Aird. Arran MacPhee and Lachie Shaw both bagged doubles with Alexander MacMillan and Lewis Morrison getting the others to see the Fort safely through to the next round. Ryan Stewart countered for Kilmallie.

In MOWI League C, Oban Camanachd beat Inveraray 4-0 at the Winterton with Daniel Madej and Connor Howe scoring in the first half whilst Daniel MacVicar added a second half brace. Camanachd boss Stephen Sloss said: “Inveraray are a good team and they gave us a hard match which was just what we needed. They are like us in they just want to play shinty. The pitch was in great condition and the boys were happy to get a game.

Covid restrictions were already affecting ties including the Macaulay tie between Oban Celtic and Ballachulish.

There were two Artemis Macaulay Cup first round ties at Mossfield where Oban Camanachd beat Bute 4-0. Connor Howe scored twice and Daniel MacVicar and Ross Campbell got the others. Stephen Sloss said: “Bute were up for the game and maybe we were a bit complacent to begin with as I thought we were poor in the first half. The changes at half-time made a difference though.”

Oban Celtic defeated Ballachulish 6-0 thanks to Duncan MacDonald’s hat-trick, Lennon Campbell’s brace and Ewen Campbell’s strike. With Oban Celtic manager Dougie MacIntyre unavailable, Les Kinvig took charge of the side, assisted by Allan Duffy. Les Kinvig said: “It was good to be playing again. We’ve haven’t had a game for almost a month and it took a while to get up to speed but when we did, the goals flowed.”

Kingussie beat Newtonmore 3-1 at the Eilan to win the first Badenoch derby of the season and secure an Artemis Macaulay Cup semi-final spot. James Falconer, Roddy Young and Dylan Borthwick were on target with Iain Robinson replying.

Kyles Athletic also reached the semis with Robbie Macleod scoring twice in a 3-2 win over Glasgow Mid Argyll.

Kinlochshiel trailed twice before beating Kilmallie 4-2 in MOWI League A. Michael Rodger’s own goal, Keith MacRae’s brace and Jordan Fraser counted for ‘Shiel with Daniel Stewart and Michael Rodger replying. Kilmallie’s Steven Stewart was sent off.

Holders Newtonmore were knocked out of the Tulloch Homes Camanachd Cup, losing 2-0 to rivals Kingussie at the Eilan. Savio Genini and Roddy Young scored either side of half-time to send the Kings into the quarter-finals.

Oban Celtic pulled off their best result of the season, beating Premiership side Glasgow Mid Argyll 3-2 to also progress in the Scottish. Ewan Fraser and Oliver MacRae scored for GMA but goals from Daniel MacMillan, Ewen Campbell and Ross MacMillan meant it was Celtic’s day. Les Kinvig said: “We didn’t do anything different. It was the same players in the same positions but it just shows what the boys can achieve when they are on their game and we deserved to win.”

Caberfeidh got past Beauly on penalties whilst Arran Jack, John MacRae and Ali Nixon gave Kinlochshiel a 3-0 win at Glenurquhart.

Bute beat Ballachulish 3-2 in the only remaining first round tie and Lochaber beat Inverness 3-0 in the Alvance British Aluminium Balliemore Cup first round with Ben Delaney netting twice and Pat Toal also scoring.

Oban Camanachd reached the Tulloch Homes Camanachd Cup quarter-finals after a 1-0 win over Fort William with Daniel MacVicar scoring the only goal of the game in the opening minute. Stephen Sloss said: “It was 30 degrees out there so it was tough for the players but I thought our fitness was very good which was important and we used the rolling substitutes to good effect. We have experience across the park, although we are still essentially a young side, and we have a good team who have played in a lot of finals. We were pretty dominant and their keeper (Paul MacKay) made a number of good saves in the first half in particular.”

Kilmallie also progressed, beating Bute 4-2 with Innes Blackhall, Lewis Birrell, Ryan Stewart and Craig MacIsaac all on target. Kilmallie manager Martin Stewart said: “It’s fantastic to be in the quarter-finals and it’s now an open draw. I’m sure we’ll be the team most clubs want to get but we are a good side on our day. It was also pleasing to field three of our under-17 players today with Dylan Monk making his debut at wing back, Aiden Love and Ben MacKinnon.”

Roddy MacDonald’s double helped Kyles Athletic beat Inveraray 4-0.

Lewis Bryson’s hat-trick helped Ballachulish beat Tayforth 5-3 after extra-time to progress in the Alvance British Aluminium Balliemore Cup.

William MacKinnon and Jordan Murchison both scored twice as Skye beat Lochcarron 5-0 in Portree.

A clinical second half display gave Oban Camanachd a 6-1 victory over Oban Celtic in their midweek Artemis Macaulay Cup quarter-final tie. Daniel MacCuish gave Oban Camanachd the lead but Ross MacMillan levelled. However Malcolm Clark, Connor Howe, Daniel MacVicar, Garry Lord and Scott MacMillan gave Oban Camanachd a convincing win. Les Kinvig said: “I thought we competed well in the first half but it was a different story after half-time when we didn’t do ourselves justice. The third goal knocked the stuffing out of us and their experience and fitness told in the end.

Stephen Sloss added: “We created a lot of chances in the first half but a mixture of crowding around the ball and poor finishing meant we had just one goal to show for our efforts. We were much better in the second half though and our fitness was good again.”

That was as far as holders Oban Camanachd got though as Robbie Macleod’s goal gave Kyles Athletic a 1-0 win and a place in the Artemis Macaulay Cup Final. Stephen Sloss said: “We just can’t buy a goal in this type of game at the moment and that cost us. Kyles are a bit more experienced than us and they did just enough to win and were hungrier than us in midfield. It’s a blow as the Macaulay is a tournament we wanted to win. We have dominated Kyles recently so you have to say it is a step back.”

Scott Harvey’s hat-trick helped Bute reach the Alvance British Aluminium Balliemore Cup second round with a 4-2 victory over Oban Celtic. Aaron McKirdy got the other with Daniel MacMillan and Lennon Campbell replying. Les Kinvig said: “It’s the worst collectively that we have played this season and we are bitterly disappointed to be going out of the Balliemore at this stage to a team in a division below us and that’s no disrespect to Bute who have a good crop of youngsters who know how to play shinty. It was a tough game in midweek against Oban Camanachd and that affected us.”

Kilmallie had Innes Blackhall red-carded but still defeated Glenurquhart 3-0 in MOWI League A. They scored through Lewis Birrell twice and Craig MacIsaac. Martin Stewart said: “It was a good performance. Lewis (Birrell) just never misses the target and Michael (Rodger) was pulling the strings up front. Our defence were terrific throughout and that gave us something to build on.”

Ruaridh Anderson scored twice as Kingussie beat Newtonmore for the third time in four weeks, winning 3-1 in their cottages.com MacTavish Cup second round clash at the Dell.

Four-goal Jordan Fraser sparkled as Kinlochshiel were too strong for Lochaber, winning 8-0 in the first round of the MacTavish.

Lorne MacKay’s extra-time double gave Lovat a 2-0 win over Skye Camanachd in the Tulloch Homes Camanachd Cup second round.

Lochside Rovers recorded three wins during the month. Lewis Buchan’s double earned a 2-1 win over the Inveraray seconds in MOWI South League A whilst Scott MacMillan hit a double in a 5-1 league victory over Taynuilt. Lochside also made HIS Sutherland Cup progress, defeating the Fort William colts 4-3.

August 2021

Kingussie booked a place in the Artemis Macaulay Cup Final as James Falconer’s double helped them defeat Lovat 4-0 at Beauly.

Keith MacRae scored twice as Kinlochshiel beat Oban Celtic 6-0 in the Tulloch Homes Camanachd Cup quarter-finals. Les Kinvig said: “Despite the result, it was a good experience for our young players. We have aspirations to play at this level week-in, week-out but we currently have a thin squad which just isn’t ready for this standard yet but the boys are learning and we’ll be in a stronger position come the start of next season.”

Kyles Athletic knocked out Beauly on penalties following their 2-2 draw.

Skye Camanachd edged out Glenurquhart 3-2 in MOWI League A, Inveraray defeated Aberdour 6-0 in Mowi League C, whilst Glasgow Mid Argyll were unable to field a team for their match at Oban Camanachd.

Oban Camanachd’s Tulloch Homes Camanachd Cup quarter-final against Lovat was postponed because of a Covid outbreak in Oban.

James Falconer scored four as Kingussie reached the semi-finals, crushing Kilmallie 11-0.

Jamie Gillies hit a treble as Skye beat Aberdour 5-0 in the Alvance British Aluminium Balliemore Cup quarter-finals, whilst Jack MacDonald went one better with a double hat-trick as Beauly thrashed Inverness 10-0.

Fraser Watt’s treble helped Inveraray beat Ballachulish 8-0 and Scott Harvey’s extra-time goal gave Bute a 2-1 victory over Strathglass.

Glenurquhart and Fort William drew 2-2 in MOWI League A. Connor Golabek and Jed Stoddart scored for the Glen with Lewis Morrison and Alexander MacMillan replying.

Kingussie claimed the first silverware of the shinty season after overcoming Kyles Athletic 4-1 in the Artemis Macaulay Cup Final in Oban. James Falconer got an early opener and Kieran MacPherson made it 2-0 just 11 minutes from time. James Falconer got his second before Innes MacDonald pulled a goal back. However substitute Lee Bain clinched victory at the death.

Lovat reached the Tulloch Homes Camanachd Cup semi-finals, beating Oban Camanachd 3-1. Fraser Heath put Lovat ahead but Malcolm Clark levelled. Greg Matheson and Marc MacLachlan gave Lovat victory. A clearly disappointed Oban Camanachd manager Stephen Sloss spoke afterwards: “It wasn’t a good day. Lovat punished mistakes we made at the back whilst we weren’t creative enough in attack and we’re clearly not scoring enough goals in the big games. We need more from some players in these games.”

Caberfeidh reached the cottages.com MacTavish Cup semi-finals following their 5-2 victory over Beauly.

Stuart Callison scored twice as Kilmallie side won 3-1 against Skye in Mowi Senior League A. Martin Stewart said: “I was really pleased with the performance, more so than any other this season. We were missing at least six regular starters but the guys who came into the side did so well. Aidan Love and Ben MacKinnon were excellent in the wing centre positions and I thought Craig MacIsaac ran the show up front.”

Doubles from Ben Delaney and Jack Dignan and Gregor Cameron’s effort helped Lochaber beat Glenurquhart 5-3.

Kinlochshiel won through to the Tulloch Homes Camanachd Cup Final for the first time in their 63-year history after beating Kyles Athletic 2-0 in their semi-final at the Taynuilt Sports Field. Keith MacRae and Jordan Fraser scored the goals that made the difference.

Oban Camanachd reached the Scottish Sea Farms Glasgow Celtic Society Cup semi-finals after battering Ballachulish 10-0. Daniel MacVicar scored four times with two-goal Daniel Cameron, Garry Lord’s penalty as well as Conner Howe, Innes Jackson and Ross Campbell making up their tally. Stephen Sloss said: “Ballachulish fought hard but, like many clubs, it’s not easy for them to get a team out every Saturday. It’s hard to judge our players as they can do well against weaker teams but then get caught out against tougher opposition.”

Glenurquhart were surprise 3-2 winners against Lovat and they take a place in the cottages.com MacTavish Cup quarter-finals. Lovat’s Greg Matheson scored twice but David MacLennan, Connor Golabeck and John Barr gave the Glen victory.

In MOWI League A, Grant Disher and Lewis Morrison gave Fort William a 2-1 win over Lochaber in an entertaining derby. Jack Dignan replied. Fort William co-manager Victor Smith said: “It was a cracking derby match. The players loved it, the crowd loved it and there was plenty banter around the touchline.”

Drew MacDonald’s brace helped Newtonmore overcome Caberfeidh 5-1 in MOWI League B and Glasgow Mid Argyll beat Aberdour 6-2 in MOWI League C with Ewan Fraser scoring five times.

Lochside Rovers saw off the Glasgow Mid Argyll seconds in the Bullough Cup.

Read next week’s Oban Times for the 2021 Shinty Review of the Season – Part 3