New man­agers take over team hot seats

The Oban Times - - Sport -

CLUBS con­tinue their prepa­ra­tions for the 2017 shinty sea­son, in­clud­ing the ap­point­ment of new man­agers at Kyles Ath­letic, Kin­gussie and Lo­vat.

Chang­ing of the guard at Kyles

James Per­lich has re­placed Nor­man Mac­Don­ald in the Kyles Ath­letic first team hot seat.

James Per­lich has been a long- term coach with the side, putting the first and sec­ond teams through their paces as well as be­ing a sound­ing board for pre­vi­ous man­agers.

He will now lead the team in his own right, with club stal­wart Kenny Mac­Don­ald con­tin­u­ing as part of the man­age­ment team.

Kyles Ath­letic won the Gre­gor Cameron Con­sul­tancy Glas­gow Celtic So­ci­ety Cup last sea­son, as well as se­cur­ing sec­ond spot in the Ma­rine Har­vest Premier­ship. Their last Ca­manachd Cup suc­cess came in 2012 when they beat In­ver­aray 6- 5 at Moss­field.

Dal­las Young ap­pointed Kin­gussie man­ager

Dal­las Young has been ap­pointed man­ager of Kin­gussie’s first team.

Young takes over from co- man­agers Rus­sell Jones and Davie An­der­son who stepped down at the end of last sea­son.

Dal­las Young was part of the great Kin­gussie sides which dom­i­nated shinty for 20 years from the mid- 1980s. He cap­tained the team to Ca­manachd Cup, Mac­Tavish Cup and league suc­cess in 1995.

He has been in­volved in youth coach­ing at Kin­gussie for a num­ber of years and has a good re­la­tion­ship with the club’s younger play­ers.

Kin­gussie chair­man Rus­sell Jones said: Dal­las Young has agreed to take over the Kin­gussie first team reins for the 2017 shinty sea­son. Dal­las is a for­mer full for­ward and Ca­manachd Cup win­ning cap­tain for the club. He has spent the last 10 years coach­ing Kin­gussie pri­mary and U14 teams with con­sis­tent suc­cess and the club are de­lighted to an­nounce his ap­point­ment.’

Kin­gussie have pre- sea­son games lined up against Caber­feidh at Castle Leod on Fe­bru­ary 11 with home matches against Beauly on Fe­bru­ary 18 and Skye on Fe­bru­ary 25.

Ryan Borth­wick will be the Kin­gussie se­nior team cap­tain for the sea­son ahead.

Fraser Gal­lacher is new Lo­vat boss

Fraser Gal­lacher has been con­firmed as the man­ager of Ma­rine Har­vest Premier­ship side Lo­vat.

The Bal­gate side has been on the hunt for a new boss since John MacRitchie an­nounced his in­ten­tion to stand down at the end of last sea­son.

Gal­lacher pa­trolled the touch­line as he watched his new charges lift the Lo­vat Cup with a 5- 2 New Year win over Beauly at Brae­view Park.

He was a no­table player for the club and has pre­vi­ous ex­pe­ri­ence hav­ing taken the Lo­vat sec­ond team in 2012. He also took the first team when John MacRitchie was un­avail­able.

Gavin Heath, who pre­vi­ously worked with Glenurquhart, will pro­vide fit­ness train­ing, tak­ing over in that role from Paul Mel­lis.

John MacRitchie, who was pre­vi­ously Lo­vat first team co- man­ager with James Gal­lacher, took sole charge at the club ahead of the start of the 2015 shinty sea­son, re­plac­ing Alan MacRae who re­signed af­ter three years in charge. The high­light of MacRitchie’s reign was un­doubt­edly the Ca­manachd Cup win, beat­ing Kyles Ath­letic at Moss­field, later that year.

Lo­vat’s 2016 sea­son was blighted by in­jury. They even­tu­ally fin­ished sev­enth in the Ma­rine Har­vest Premier­ship. Their Ca­manachd Cup de­fence ended at the first time of ask­ing, los­ing out to New­ton­more who would go on to lift shinty’s top prize.

Lo­vat showed their po­ten­tial by beat­ing New­ton­more in the Artemis Macaulay Cup quar­ter fi­nals be­fore los­ing out to even­tual win­ners Kin­lochshiel in the last four of the com­pe­ti­tion.

New­ton­more were also Lo­vat’s op­po­nents in the 2016 RBS Mac­Tavish Cup which the Ei­lan men won 3- 0 in the first round.

John MacRitchie will con­tinue in his role as Lo­vat pres­i­dent as the club look to im­ple­ment am­bi­tious plans to build a new club­house.

Lo­vat also con­firmed Darren Urquhart has been ap­pointed sec­ond team man­ager, tak­ing over from Martin Bell. Urquhart was Lo­vat sec­ond team assistant man­ager last sea­son and will lead the Lo­vat re­serves in Ma­rine Har­vest North Divi­sion 2 in 2017.

Oban Ca­manachd’s pre- sea­son plans

Oban Ca­manachd man­ager Iain Hay is work­ing hard on his team’s prepa­ra­tions ahead of the new shinty sea­son.

The New Year in­ter- club match gave the play­ers an early run out and train­ing is well un­der way.

Friendly matches have been ar­ranged against In­ver­aray at Moss­field on Satur­day Fe­bru­ary 4 and Kyles Ath­letic at Tighnabru­aich the week af­ter. Hay is also look­ing to se­cure friendly matches for the fol­low­ing two Satur­days of the month.

There will be the op­por­tu­nity for Hay to pro­mote a cou­ple of play­ers from the Lochside Rovers squad as David Laf­ferty misses the start of the new sea­son with a knee in­jury whilst 2016 cap­tain James MacMil­lan has moved abroad for a year.

Oban Celtic add to squad

Oban Celtic man­ager Kenny Wother­spoon has con­firmed two new sign­ings ahead of the club’s na­tional shinty cam­paign.

The ex­pe­ri­enced An­drew Hunt from Stra­chur joins the club, as does de­fender Ful­ton Ron­ald from Glenorchy. Both play­ers played ma­jor roles for their pre­vi­ous clubs and will be great ad­di­tions to the Oban side’s squad.

Oban Celtic have also been boosted by the news that for­mer play­ers Alan Mackie, John Hill, Adrian Cake­bread and Jack Hill are able to com­mit for the full sea­son, in­creas­ing man­ager Wother­spoon’s se­lec­tion op­tions.

Long term in­jury ca­su­alty Iain ‘ Shug­gie’ MacFar­lane has re­turned to full train­ing af­ter a two- year ab­sence with a knee in­jury and there is more good news with full cen­tre David ‘ Skinny’ MacInnes com­mit­ting to the club for an­other sea­son. The vet­eran’s pre­vi­ous na­tional league shinty ex­pe­ri­ence will be a huge ben­e­fit to the squad this com­ing sea­son.

Ally Fer­gu­son lines up Lochaber

Lochaber boss Ally Fer­gu­son is putting his team through their paces ahead of an­other sea­son in shinty’s top divi­sion.

Pre- sea­son train­ing has be­gun and, on the player front, de­fender Jack Dig­nan is on the road to re­cov­ery fol­low­ing an eye socket in­jury.

Zandz Fer­gu­son, based in Aberdeen, should be more avail­able than last sea­son, whilst Con­nor Sweeney re­joins the Spean Bridge out­fit af­ter a pe­riod away in which he won the Ma­rine Har­vest South Divi­sion 2 ti­tle with Tay­forth.

These ad­di­tions will in­crease the for­mer Scot­land head coach’s op­tions which will help as long- term ser­vants Lachlan Campbell and Neil Mac­Don­ald have re­tired from first team duty, whilst Ben De­laney’s avail­abil­ity will be lim­ited this sea­son.

There has been a change to Lochaber’s pre- sea­son pro­gramme as the match against 18 Fe­bru­ary 18 will no longer go ahead.

Lochaber will still play New­ton­more at the Ei­lan on Satur­day Fe­bru­ary 4 and Fort Wil­liam at Spean Bridge a week later.

The side rounds off their pre- sea­son pro­gramme against In­ver­ness at the Bught Park on Satur­day Fe­bru­ary 25.

New Skye Ca­manachd bosses set pre- sea­son games

Skye Ca­manachd have con­firmed their pre- sea­son pro­gramme as they bid to make a quick re­turn to the Ma­rine Har­vest Premier­ship.

New Skye Ca­manachd first team co- man­agers Wil­lie Cowie and Peter Gor­don have set their side a test­ing month with three games against Ma­rine Har­vest Premier­ship op­po­si­tion.

The Skye play­ers took part in the John MacKin­non Me­mo­rial Shinty Sixes at the turn of the year and train­ing is now in full swing.

Skye’s pre- sea­son sched­ule will see them play Lo­vat at Pairc nan Laoch, Portree, on Satur­day Fe­bru­ary 11 in the an­nual Ge­orge Michie Me­mo­rial Cup match.

The is­lan­ders travel to Drum­nadro­chit to play Glenurquhart a week later.

Skye then head for the Dell on Satur­day Fe­bru­ary 25 to play Kin­gussie be­fore their com­pet­i­tive shinty sea­son starts in the Ma­rine Har­vest Na­tional Divi­sion the fol­low­ing week­end.

The Skye Ca­manachd sec­ond team have also made their pre- sea­son plans.

New boss Kenny MacLeod takes his team to Bat­tery Park to play Lochcar­ron on Satur­day Fe­bru­ary 11.

Next up is a meet­ing with the Glenurquhart sec­ond team at Pairc nan Laoch, Portree a week af­ter.

The Skye sec­onds then play Lewis Ca­manachd for the Kaid MacLean tro­phy at Pairc nan Laoch, Portree on Satur­day Fe­bru­ary 25.

Don­ald Wil­son and Mal­colm Grant stay In charge at Ballachulish

Don­ald Wil­son and his assistant Mal­colm Grant will stay on in charge at Ballachulish for the 2017 shinty sea­son.

The duo have also named for­ward Lorne Brown as their cap­tain for the year ahead.

The Ju­bilee Park side will play in Ma­rine Har­vest South Divi­sion 1 next term af­ter fin­ish­ing bot­tom of the Ma­rine Har­vest Na­tional Divi­sion at the end of the 2016 sea­son.

Dunoon Ca­manachd re­cruit­ment drive

Dunoon Ca­manachd are ap­peal­ing for new shinty play­ers to bol­ster their squad.

The club are par­tic­u­larly keen to hear from play­ers who came through the ranks of com­mit­tee mem­ber Bobby Crowe’s Dunoon ju­nior club.

All lev­els of ex­pe­ri­ence are wel­come and Dunoon are par­tic­u­larly keen to add more ex­pe­ri­enced play­ers to help the newer/ younger play­ers im­prove. Newer play­ers to the game are also wel­come.

The club had a good de­but sea­son in Ma­rine Har­vest South Divi­sion 2 in 2016. They com­pleted all their fix­tures and recorded two league wins.

How­ever, more play­ers are needed for the rigours of a full league and cup sched­ule. Any­one in­ter­ested should con­tact any club player or com­mit­tee mem­ber or email: dunoon­ca­manachd@ya­hoo.co.uk

New­ton­more warm up at The Ei­lan

New­ton­more will warm up for the new sea­son with three pre­sea­son friendlies at the Ei­lan.

Paul John MacK­in­tosh’s side will host Lochaber on Satur­day Fe­bru­ary 4, whilst In­ver­ness visit a fort­night later. They then take on Caber­feidh at the club’s open day on Satur­day Fe­bru­ary 25.

T he club’s orig­i­nal plans for a fix­ture on Satur­day Fe­bru­ary 11 have fallen through so they are still look­ing for op­po­si­tion for that date.

Strath­spey Ca­manachd thanks Oban for sup­port

The Oban Times re­cently fea­tured Strath­spey Ca­manachd’s predicament as they were forced to launch a fundrais­ing drive af­ter a fire de­stroyed all their shinty equip­ment.

Oban Celtic and the Macaulay As­so­ci­a­tion picked up on their plight and both do­nated shinty balls, prompt­ing Strath­spey Ca­manachd to pass on their thanks to both or­gan­i­sa­tions for their gen­eros­ity.

Lewis Ca­manachd player of the year awards

Lewis Ca­manachd an­nounced their 2016 player of the year awards at a cer­e­mony fol­low­ing their New Year Iomain Chal­lainn at Smith Av­enue, Stornoway.

Af­ter an af­ter­noon’s shinty, in which the Lewis Blues beat the Lewis Reds 5- 4, the play­ers re­tired to a so­cial evening at the golf club where they voted on the award win­ners.

Michael MacLeod was a con­sis­tent per­former dur­ing the year and was named se­nior player of the year.

Women’s shinty is on the up in Lewis and Ali­cia MacSween was women’s player of the year.

Youth player of the year was Steven Mor­ri­son, one of the bright­est prospects in the Lewis camp.

Michael MacLeod was also the first re­cip­i­ent of the man­ager’s award, the choice of boss Dun­can MacIn­tyre, and club chair­woman An­nette Mur­ray ac­cepted the award on his be­half as he was on hol­i­day.

The cap­tain’s choice was an­other new award and 2016 cap­tain Kenny Mur­ray chose Ally Lamont for this ac­co­lade.

The Pater­sons of Beauly

A cen­te­nary re­flec­tion on ri­fles, ro­mance, shinty and World War 1 takes place at the High­land Ar­chive Cen­tre, In­ver­ness, on Thurs­day Fe­bru­ary 9.

The night will in­clude an il­lus­trated talk from Dr Hugh Dan Ma­cLen­nan and Mar­garet MacKay which will take the au­di­ence back in time to the High­land com­mu­ni­ties of 100 years ago.

Fam­ily his­tory and lore, an au­to­graph book, sport­ing ac­tiv­i­ties, mu­sic, pho­tographs and mil­i­tary im­per­a­tives are all used to il­lu­mi­nate a story of Scot­land, Canada and the High­lands which res­onates to this day.

There will also be en­ter­tain­ment from fa­mous piper Dun­can MacGil­lvray who re­cently piped Beauly and Lo­vat onto the pitch ahead of their New Year Lo­vat Cup clash.

Ad­mis­sion is free and the event starts at 7.30pm.

John Mack­ech­nie, Glenorchy

The shinty com­mu­nity lost an­other well- re­garded fig­ure when John Mack­ech­nie, Glenorchy, died sud­denly on Mon­day De­cem­ber 26, aged 76.

John was a past pres­i­dent of Glenorchy Shinty Club and made an enor­mous con­tri­bu­tion to the Dal­mally club, serv­ing in var­i­ous roles for more than 40 years.

John Mack­ech­nie was also a mem­ber of the Ca­manachd As­so­ci­a­tion Dis­ci­plinary Com­mit­tee for sev­eral years and will be sorely missed by every­one who knew him.

Although John never played shinty, noth­ing gave him more pride than watch­ing two of his sons, Al­lan and Graeme, play­ing for Glenorchy over the years. The Mack­ech­nie con­nec­tion with the club con­tin­ued as his grand­son Arik be­came a Glenorchy reg­u­lar last sea­son whilst an­other grand­son, Len­nan, has started out on his shinty ca­reer play­ing for Park Pri­mary School, Oban, and Oban Ca­manachd U14s.

John is sur­vived by his beloved wife Chris­tine, sons Don­ald, Al­lan and Graeme and six grand­chil­dren. John’s fu­neral took place at Dal­mally Church on Satur­day Jan­uary 14.

New Kin­gussie man­ager Dal­las Young. Photo: Neil Paterson

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