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Digital Subscriptions > The Oban Times & Lochaber Times > 31st August 2017 > Camanachd Cup semi-final win for Newtonmore

Camanachd Cup semi-final win for Newtonmore

NEWTONMORE will play Lovat in the Tulloch Homes Camanachd Cup Final, Kyles Athletic returned to the top of the Marine Harvest Premiership and Lochside Rovers increased their lead at the top of Marine Harvest South Division 1 following the shinty action on Saturday 26 August 2017.

Tulloch Homes Camanachd Cup - semi final

Skye Camanachd 1

Newtonmore 4

Newtonmore will play Lovat in the 2017 Tulloch Homes Camanachd Cup Final after they beat Skye Camanachd 4-1 in their semi-final tie at The Bught Park, Inverness.

This 4pm throw up was broadcast live on BBC Alba and a good crowd gathered in the Highland capital for the game.

Skye went into the tie on top of the Marine Harvest National Division and, whilst a return to shinty’s top flight has been their priority this season, the squad were well aware that they were just 90 minutes away from a place at shinty’s biggest day of the year. Skye’s last Camanachd Cup semi-final was in 2014 when they lost out to Glenurquhart.

Skye manager Willie Cowie missed the previous weekend’s league win over Fort William as he was abroad at a family wedding but he was back in the dug-out for this one as was forward Will Cowie who started on the bench.

Marine Harvest Premiership side Newtonmore are Camanachd Cup holders having beaten Oban Camanachd in last year’s final. Manager Paul John MacKintosh has been without the injured Drew MacDonald and Chris Sellar in recent weeks.

Rory Kennedy’s ankle ligament injury also kept him on the sidelines whilst a one-match ban for passing through the disciplinary points threshold deprived Evan Menzies of a place in the side.

Neil Stewart was given a start in attack after he made his return for the reserves the previous week following a serious knee injury. David Fraser was selected at wing centre in preference to Iain Richardson who dropped onto the bench.

The players and officials were piped into the field before they were introduced to George Fraser from sponsors Tulloch Homes; himself no stranger to the Camanachd Cup during his playing days with Newtonmore. Despite heavy rain overnight, the pitch was in good condition and Newtonmore won the toss; opting to play with a slight wind in their favour.

Skye made a bright start and they forced an early free-hit following a Stewart Grant shy on the left, but the Newtonmore defence, with something to prove after losing seven goals in their Artemis Macaulay Cup Final defeat to Kyles Athletic a week earlier, cleared their lines.

Newtonmore had a let-off when on seven minutes good play down the Skye left saw Iain Nicolson play in Iain MacLellan who beat Steven MacDonald before setting up a chance for James Pringle but he steered the ball just the wrong side of the post. Newtonmore made their first attack count a minute later.

David MacLean sent a free-hit from the right of midfield to the far side where Glen MacKintosh made enough space to turn and rifle a shot across the keeper and into the net to make it 1-0. The goal was against the run of play and a lesson in clinical finishing from the Scotland international. Newtonmore came more into the game but it took a late Craig Ritchie intervention to stop Iain MacLellan getting a shot on goal on 17 minutes and Skye had to settle for a corner.

The Newtonmore defence had to work hard to survive a scramble around the D on 26 minutes; blocking shots and protecting keeper Norman Campbell as Skye looked to draw level. Skye keeper Iain MacLeod did well on 29 minutes when a cross was deflected on target off a Skye defender following some skilful play from Glen MacKintosh on the Newtonmore left.

Skye made the first change of the match on 31 minutes as Will Cowie took over in attack from Iain MacLellan. James Pringle went to full forward with Cowie at wing forward.

Glen MacKintosh was the main focus of the Newtonmore attack and he almost bustled his way through the middle of the Skye defence on 35 minutes but Neil MacVicar got the ball away with keeper Iain MacLeod tripped by the Newtonmore marksman as he went send the ball up-field. Moments later, Iain MacLeod was quickly off his line to get the ball away for a corner with Fraser MacKintosh looking to capitalise on any slip.

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