The shinty round up – Saturday February 19 2022

John Sweeney, Glasgow Mid Argyll, battles with David Hill of Oban Celtic during the friendly clash at Mossfield, Oban. Photograph: Kevin McGlynn.

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New cup draw for single teams

The draw for the Camanachd Association’s new single team cup competition has thrown up several interesting ties.

Thirteen sides were split into north and south sections for the opening round pairings and much-fancied Glengarry were given a first round tie at Strathspey.

Cruachanside are off to Ballachulish, whilst Ardnamurchan welcome Tayforth.

North and south teams remained apart throughout the draw, guaranteeing a north/south final.

First round – Saturday April 16: Northern Section: Lochcarron v Aberdeen University; Glengarry v Strathspey Camanachd. Byes – Lewis Camanachd and Boleskine.

Southern Section: Ardnamurchan v Tayforth; Kilmory v Col Glen; Ballachulish v Cruachanside. Bye – Strachur-Dunoon.

Quarter finals – Saturday May 14: Kilmory/Col Glen v Ballachulish/Cruachanside; Glengarry/Strathspey Camanachd v Lochcarron/Aberdeen University; Boleskine v Lewis Camanachd; Strachur-Dunoon v Ardnamurchan/Tayforth. Semi final – Saturday June 18: Boleskine/Lewis Camanachd v Glengarry/Strathspey Camanachd/Lochcarron/Aberdeen University; Kilmory/Col-Glen/Ballachulish/Cruachanside v Strachur-Dunoon/Ardnamurchan/Tayforth.

The single team cup competition final will take place on Saturday July 16.

North sides learn Strathdearn fate

The Fort William second team received a tough draw in the opening round of the Strathdearn Cup as they were paired away to 2021 beaten finalists Newtonmore.

Kilmallie open with a trip to Strathspey.

The draw was made all the way through to the final and there is one preliminary round tie with the Lochaber seconds drawn away to Beauly.

Preliminary round – Saturday March 26: Beauly v Lochaber.

First round – Saturday April 30: Glenurquhart v Beauly/Lochaber; Newtonmore v Fort William; Caberfeidh v Boleskine; Skye Camanachd v Kingussie; Kinlochshiel v Lewis Camanachd; Inverness v Aberdeen University; Strathspey Camanachd v Kilmallie; Lovat v Strathglass. Second round – Saturday May 21: Caberfeidh/Boleskine v Inverness/Aberdeen University; Glenurquhart/Beauly/Lochaber v Kinlochshiel/Lewis; Newtonmore/Fort William v Skye Camanachd/Kingussie; Lovat/Strathglass v Strathspey Camanachd/Kilmallie. Semi final – Saturday July 9: Glenurquhart/Beauly/Lochaber/Kinlochshiel/Lewis Camanachd v Lovat/Strathglass/Strathspey Camanachd/Kilmallie; Newtonmore/Fort William/Skye Camanachd/Kingussie v Caberfeidh/Boleskine/ Inverness/Aberdeen University.

The Strathdearn Cup Final takes place on Saturday August 27, with the venue yet to be decided.

Pre-season friendlies

A few pre-season friendlies beat the elements, with the new shinty season now just over a week away.

Oban Celtic 0 Glasgow Mid Argyll 3

With several teams still idle, Oban Celtic and Glasgow Mid Argyll (GMA) bucked the trend, each playing their second pre-season friendly at Mossfield, Oban.

Celtic lost out at Kyles Athletic the previous week, whilst GMA beat Inveraray.

The hosts were missing Lewis Mcphee, Neil Carmichael, Peter Currie, George MacMillan and new signing Jordan Kerr for this clash, whilst GMA travelled north without Ewen Fraser and Jonnie MacAskill.

The visitors went ahead midway through the first half when Jamie McFadyen shot from 25 yards out. Keeper Robbie MacKay got his fingers to the ball but couldn’t keep it out.

Both sides were forced into first half changes. A groin problem ended the afternoon for Oban Celtic’s Andy MacDonald’s afternoon, with Michael MacKinnon, who had been delayed at work, taking over.

GMA’s Calum McLay, who missed all of last season, broke a finger in an accidental clash and Celtic’s Craig MacMillan was withdrawn on the half-hour prompting an Oban Celtic reshuffle which saw Scott Dempster drop back into defence.

Oban Celtic put Dylan Cooke onto the wing from the start of the second half, with Jamie Forgrieve going to half back.

GMA doubled their lead around 20 minutes into the second half when they worked the ball down the right before crossing with John Sweeney’s 20-yard shot on the angle beating the goalie.

Garry Luke added a third on 73 minutes. Robbie MacKay saved with his feet by his left post but couldn’t flick the ball out for a corner and Luke raced in to score.

The Oban Celtic second team were to face the Lochaber second team but that game was called off with Ganavan waterlogged.

Oban Celtic are without a fixture this Saturday and their attentions now turn to Skye’s visit on the opening day of the new season.

Joe MacVicar, Oban Celtic, finds his way blocked by John Don MacKenzie of Glasgow Mid Argyll in the friendly clash at Mossfield which Glasgow Mid Argyll won 3-0. Photograph: Kevin McGlynn.
Kinlochshiel 2 Inverness 1

The Kinlochshiel and Inverness first and second teams were to meet at the Bught Park,  but a pitch inspection led to the clubs’ senior sides meeting at Kinlochshiel’s former pitch at Kirkton.

This was a terrific encounter on a soft pitch. Kinlochshiel fielded a strong side but were missing Conor Cormack, John MacRae and the injured Paul MacRae.

Former Ballachulish and Skye player Dougie Rankin was in goal for Inverness in his first game back following a heart scare and he turned in a man-of-the-match performance.

Jordan Fraser gave Kinlochshiel the lead in the first half and they had the chance to add a second when referee Neillie ‘Ach’ MacRae awarded them a penalty. Ali Nixon, now recovered from a hamstring problem which limited his game time at the end of last season, hit the spot-hit well enough, but Dougie Rankin saved well above his head. The keeper couldn’t get the ball away though and Duncan Matheson nipped in to bundle it over the line.

Finlay Calder scored for an Inverness side who worked really hard throughout.

Strachur-Dunoon 3 Uddingston 0

Strachur-Dunoon made their first appearance, beating another new side, Uddingston, 3-0 at the grammar school.

Cameron Middleton, Craig Torlay and Fergus Irvine were the goal scorers.

Inveraray P Oban Camanachd P

Bad weather made it clear earlier in the week that Inveraray’s meeting with Oban Camanachd at the Winterton could not go ahead.

Aberdour P Glengarry P

Glengarry’s trip to Fife to play National Division side Aberdour was called off 24 hours ahead of throw-up as a result of bad weather.

The Aberdour second team’s Saturday game with their Bute counterparts was also off as was their encounter with Uddingston on the Sunday.

Skye Camanachd P Kilmallie P

The Thomas Ferguson Memorial Cup match between Skye Camanachd and Kilmallie in Portree was called off, as was the second team meeting between the sides at Canal Parks.

Kingussie P Fort William P

Kingussie and Fort William were disappointed when Market Stance and An Aird were both deemed unplayable which meant the reserve team meeting between the clubs was also called off.

Newtonmore P Caberfeidh P

Newtonmore suffered their fourth postponement of the pre-season when their match with Caberfeidh at the Eilan was called off. The second team friendly between the sides at Strathpeffer also fell foul of the weather.

Bute P Kyles Athletic P

Bute’s derby with Kyles Athletic was another weather-related early week call off.

Clubhouse defibrillator

Kyles Athletic became the latest shinty club to have a defibrillator fitted at their clubhouse. It was fitted by Gavin Kerr and is available to the community and visitors.

Skye Camanachd annual general meeting

Skye Camanachd held its annual general meeting at its clubhouse in Portree.

Vice chairman Thomas Wilson led the meeting, assuming the role of interim chairman until a replacement for outgoing chairwoman Fiona Cruickshank is found.

Club stalwart Donnie Martin is Skye Camanachd’s new Chieftain, taking over from Andy MacPherson. This is a three-year appointment.

Treasurer Ceitidh Douglas reported an encouraging financial position despite the effects of covid over the last two seasons during which Vattenfall remained as main sponsors. There was concern at the increased cost of camans, with some costing £79. Increasing wood prices are a major contributory factor.

Kenny Macleod continues as first team manager for the Ferguson Transport & Shipping Balliemore Cup winners, whilst Ally MacDonald replaces Allan MacLeod as second team boss. John Angus MacInnes continues with the women’s team and Allan MacLeod takes on an important role as the club’s youth sides look to recover from the disruption caused by covid.

Davie Pringle and Kenny Macleod are to re-join the Skye Camanachd Board with Archie Rhodes and Jenna Beaton coming on as new board members.

Former secretary Archie MacDonald, Bernisdale, and former player Richard Stoddart have been added to the list of honorary vice presidents.

Col Glen get ready

Col Glen held a pre-season training session with a difference when they travelled to the east coast for an intense fitness workout on Tyningham Beach near Dunbar.

The training was led by ex-marine Ryan Logan, a friend and colleague of Col Glen player Hamish Harrison.

The session lasted two hours with activities including sand dune hill sprints and swimming in the North Sea in between exercises.

After the players were put through their paces, they stayed overnight at the Dolphin Inn, Dunbar, with the trip funded from money raised from sponsored running challenges before Christmas. They thank everyone who contributed.

This was a first for the club and sets them up nicely for the remainder of the pre-season and their opening Mowi South Division 1 fixture at home to Bute.

The need for referees

The Camanachd Association has launched an appeal for new shinty referees.

Experienced referees Ross Brown, Andy MacLean and Archie Ritchie may not be unavailable this season, whilst Neil MacDonald is switching from refereeing to being the new assistant manager of the Aberdour second team.

The number of referees was already lower than the association would like and they are looking to recruit more male and female referees ahead of the new campaign.

A shinty referee receives a match fee and mileage allowance, the option of matches allocated on a local basis, an allocation of matches to fit in with referee availability and the knowledge they are giving back to Scotland’s most historic sport.

As a first step towards getting involved, new referees are required to attend a free Foundation Refereeing Course.

Anyone interested in becoming a shinty referee should call Astie Cameron on 01463 715931/07912 731295 or email

Saturday’s pre-season friendlies

With winter weather decimating the pre-season programme so far, clubs have one final chance to get a game played ahead of the start of the new shinty season on Saturday March 5.

Oban Camanachd hope to welcome Fort William to Mossfield. This will be a second friendly game for Gareth Evans and his Oban Camanachd squad. Fort William co-managers Victor Smith and Adam Robertson have seen two meetings with Newtonmore and one with Kingussie fall to the weather.

Oban Celtic are send their second team to Ardnamurchan, whilst Glengarry head for Braeview Park to play Beauly. The Beauly second team are away to Caberfeidh.

Kilmallie and Lochaber meet and the Lochaber seconds welcome Lochcarron.

There is sure to be a big crowd for a west coast derby in Portree where Skye and Kinlochshiel contest the George Michie Memorial Cup. Kinlochshiel’s second team are off to Boleskine.

Alan MacRae’s Glasgow Mid Argyll hope to play their third pre-season friendly at Kingussie.