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Glen Cam Unstuck as Oban advance in MacAulay!
18 May 2012

Artemis MacAulay Cup 1st Round

Glenorchy 0-1 Oban Camanachd

Local rivals Glenorchy and Oban Camanachd clashed for the third time already this campaign at Dalmally on Saturday in the opening round of the Artemis MacAulay Cup. After the two previous meetings ended up in draws after 90 minutes both sides were anticipating a very hard fought and close encounter with not much to choose between the teams.

Glenorchy made 5 changes altogether from the starting 12 that dealt with Strachur last week with John Sartain, Lorne Brown, Ewan Murray, Scott MacKillop and skipper Findlay Ross dropping out for varying reasons. in their place were, James Livingstone, Kieran MacKay, Sandy Leiper, Kenny MacDougall and Scott Livingstone.

Manager, Allan MacKechnie was also late in arriving for the throw-up so John MacPherson assumed the managerial responsibilities for the afternoon. Oban Camanachd were the quickest to get going early on, which was to be expected after they would have been suffering from their surprise defeat to GMA last weekend. Aiden MacIntyre and Scott MacMillan both had early chances which just flew off target.

Glen were struggling to get going without the inspiration of captain Ross in the middle but Alec MacPherson soon assumed that responsibility with some mazy runs forward to get his side going. Glen's first effort came courtesy of Kieran MacKay's long range shot after 12 minutes which whistled just over the top.

Glen were forced into a change shortly after when James Livingstone succumbed to a tight groin and his place in defence was taken by Graham 'grinch' Morrice. Camanachd's Iain MacMillan then went on a run which ultimately came to nothing but signalled their intent to notch that important opening goal.

Alec MacPherson then found his way into referee Duncan Kelly's notebook for a hard tackle on opposite number, Andrew MacCuish. Still the visitors were enjoying the bulk of posession as the Glen backline of Grant MacPherson, Morrice, Duncan MacDougall and Fulton Ronald were keeping their side in the tie. Although, goalkeeper Andrew Smith wasn't really tested until 26 minutes through Scott MacMillan's low drive which brought appeals for a penalty from Oban but the referee and goal-judge Findlay Ross ignored these claims.

A second early change followed for Glenorchy with Ewan Murray arriving late after his shift at work and he entered proceedings in place of Sandy Leiper with Murray going into defence and Morrice moving up to half-forward. MacKay again looked Glen's best bet for a goal as he forced Robert Dunnings into his first save of the day after 36 minutes.

Still the deadlock couldn't be broken and Matt Rippon fired over the top after good set-up play from Robert Alexander on the Oban wing. Glen's Duncan Smith then had a great chance but his strike was blocked by Daniel Cameron just before Glen lost Kenny MacDougall to a nasty hand injury and he was replaced at full forward by Lorne Brown.

The last few chances of the half fell to Camanachd with Aiden MacIntyre and Rippon both going close to notching the opener but found 'Pudding' Smith in great form in the Glen goal.

Half-time arrived with the game still goalless with Oban Camanachd having the better of proceedings but Glen would have the wind in the second period and this was something that coach MacPherson reiterated to his players.

Glen reintroduced James Livingstone up front at the start of the second half for Brown. Glenorchy started stronger this period with the wind a factor in the game and Livingstone and Morrice both went agonisingly close to the opener, Morrice's being a great looping shot which almost deceived Dunnings in the Camanachd goal.

Andrew Smith then fell to the ground after a late challenge from Rippon which saw the forward become the second player to be booked. Both sides were now struggling to create chances as defences were on top to a great extent.

Scott MacMillan's low drive flew just beyond Smith's left hand post before Scott Livingstone fired narrowly wide just a minute later. Then came a very important moment in the game after a free hit from MacKay, Alec MacPherson had a fantastic shot saved by Dunnings with his stick high above his head which drew applause from spectators and gasps of admiration from fellow players.

The Glen midfield of Scott Livingstone, Alec MacPherson and John McNulty were enjoying the bulk of the pressure now and this, in-turn enabled forwards, Kieran McKay, James Livingstone, Morrice and Duncan Smith to create some chances which just couldn't find the target.

Just as the game looked like ending goalless and extra time, Camanachd were awarded a penalty after Fulton Ronald was penalised for hacking Malcolm Clark as he entered the area. Scott MacMillan accepted the gift as smashed his shot high past Smith to put Oban Camanachd 1-0 up with only 5 minutes remaining.

Fulton Ronald concedes the penalty that led to Camanachd's winner 6 minutes from time

Glen then flung Grant MacPherson forward in search of that equaliser but try as they might they just couldn't breach the visiting rearguard. Then with just a minute to go, Grant MacPherson fired just wide and his swing followed through and caught the hand of David MacMillan who reacted by swinging at MacPherson as he fell, MacPherson reacted angrily to this and apperared to stand on his opponent which resulted in a mass brawl emanating. Players from both sides waded in as proceedings threatened to get out of hand with numerous angry pushing and shoving matches taking place. Referee Kelly then booked MacPherson for his initial reaction and ended the game shortly after which was probably a wise decision given he could easily have dished out at least 3 or 4 red cards.

Tempers flared after an incident between Grant MacPherson and David MacMillan.

Glen will be disappointed that they didn't at least force extra time given they enjoyed the vast majority of the second half posession. Although Camanachd probably. maybe just about edged it, Glen can take encouragement and confidence from this display as Oban are certainly one of the top sides in the South.

Next up for Oban Camanachd will be another hard fought encounter against neighbours Oban Celtic at Mossfield on Saturday in a 12 noon throw-up. Glenorchy travel to take on Beauly in the first round of the Balliemore Cup in what is arguably their most important tie of the season so far. Beauly have defeated Premier League high-flyers Lovat already this campaign so Glen know it will be a very tough game.

Glenorchy: Andrew Smith, Grant MacPherson, Duncan MacDougall, James Livingstone, Fulton Ronald, Scott Livingstone, Alec MacPherson, John McNulty, Kieran MacKay, Sandy Leiper, Duncan Smith, Kenny MacDougall. Subs Used: Lorne Brown, Graham Morrice, Ewan Murray. Unused: Scott MacIntyre


Duncan Smith

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