Shinty: Bute back in league action after cup win

BUTE Shinty Club’s first team return to action in the Orion Group Premiership this Saturday after picking up their first win of the season last weekend.

The island side will make the long trip north to face Glenurquhart in good heart after avoiding a potential banana skin last Saturday with a 4-1 win at Glenorchy in the first round of the AJG Parcels Celtic Society Cup.

Bute got off to the perfect start in the Dalmally sunshinewhen Leighton Reid knocked in a shy from the right wing inside the first five minutes and found Robert Walker, who turned his man before finding the bottom corner of the net with a nice finish.

Robert Ferguson, back in the team after injury, added the second with less than quarter of an hour gone, picking up possession in the second forward position and beating two Glenorchy defenders before slipping the ball past the keeper and into the net, and Iain MacDonald notched the third after his high ball into the D bounced awkwardly in front of the Glenorchy keeper on a hard surface before finding the back of the net.

Ruairaidh Soane added a fourth before the break when he drilled the ball home from the edge of the D after a goalmouth scramble, but despite continuing to dominate after the break, Bute were unable to recapture the rhythm of the first half.

The only goal of the second period was scored by the hosts, Alex MacPherson converting from the spot after the Glenorchy goal judge signalled that Bute goalkeeper Kevin Queen had saved a shot with a kick, despite loud protests from the visitors that the keeper’s foot had been on the ground at the time.

Last Saturday’s win sets up a home quarter-final for Bute against Oban Camanachd at the Meadows on April 21, with the winners travelling to Inveraray or Kyles in the semi-finals four weeks later.

Other first round winners were Aberdour, whose 1-0 home win over Glasgow Mid Argyll earned them a last-eight tie away to Kilmory, and Oban Celtic, who will travel to Taynuilt to fight for a place in the semi-finals after cruising past Strachur 4-0.

Meanwhile, Bute’s Premiership opponents this weekend, Glenurquhart, ended a run of three straight defeats last Saturday by defeating Inverness 4-2 in the opening round of the Mactavish Cup.

Glenurquhart have played their first five games of the season on home soil - this weekend’s game will make it six - but have got off to a surprisingly slow start, with an opening-day win over Kilmallie followed by losses at the hands of Inveraray, Kyles and Kinlochshiel.

This weekend’s shinty action in Rothesay features the Bute second team, who return to league action after their Sutherland Cup loss to Skye with a home tie in South Division Two against Ballachulish. Throw-up at the Meadows is at 2.30pm.