Shinty world pays its re­spects to Oban’s ‘Nonny’ MacInnes

The Oban Times - - Sport - Iain MacIn­tyre.

IT WAS with great sad­ness that Oban Ca­manachd Club ad­vised the shinty fra­ter­nity of the pass­ing on Tues­day March 28 of Neil MacInnes, at the age of 46, fol­low­ing a short, but bravely fought, ill­ness.

‘Nonny’, as he was known to ev­ery­one who knew him, was a colos­sal part of Oban Ca­manachd dur­ing his life­time, not only as an out­stand­ing player and then ad­min­is­tra­tor but lately as a sup­porter.

It is poignant to re­port that Nonny was in the stand sup­port­ing Oban Ca­manachd in their game against New­ton­more on Satur­day March 18 and, al­though very ill, it would be in his na­ture to re­joice that his last in­volve­ment with shinty was a win against such for­mi­da­ble op­po­nents. As men­tioned, Nonny was an out­stand­ing player for Oban Ca­manachd and al­though a medal win­ner on many oc­ca­sions, his great­est tri­umph was to lead Oban Ca­manachd to vic­tory as cap­tain in the 1996 Ca­manachd Cup Fi­nal ver­sus Kin­gussie.

In ad­di­tion to be­ing an out­stand­ing half back, he was a nat­u­ral born leader and on that day he led by ex­am­ple, bring­ing his team back from a deficit of 2- 0 to win 3-2.

Few will for­get his af­ter din­ner speech at In­ver­ness Town Hall where, ‘off the cuff’, he gave a hu­mor­ous and de­light­ful win­ning cap­tain’s speech.

Nonny won the Al­bert Smith Medal for ‘man of the match’ on two oc­ca­sions at Ca­manachd Cup Fi­nals as well as a ‘man of the match’ at a Macau­lay Cup Fi­nal. Nonny also fea­tured in the shinty/ hurl­ing in­ter­na­tion­als.

The shinty world is united in ex­tend­ing its sym­pa­thy to his wife Karen and daugh­ters Kirsty and Jenna at this dif­fi­cult time. Also in our thoughts are his mother Rhoda and his broth­ers Ian and Ally; Ally hav­ing played with him in the 1996 fi­nal.

Nonny’s fu­neral was held at Oban Par­ish Church on Tues­day April 4, with the in­ter­ment at Pen­ny­fuir Ceme­tery, Oban, there­after.

Pho­to­graph: Steven Law­son.

James Tangey takes a fall, watched by New­ton­more’s Mike Russell and Fort Wil­liam team mate Niall MacPhee.

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