League leaders Aberdour and the Kingdom of Fife was the destination for well-travelled Bute in South Division 1 last Saturday with the island team only having played two league games at home all season.
A break down on the ferry put paid to the anticipated early through up though Bute started the match brightly despite playing into a strong headwind.
Iain McDonald had returning to the starting line-up and his physicality was causing the home defence problems and coupled with the movement and touch play of Craig Fisher and Franco Devlin and the grit and drive of Jambo Craig meant the away side were exerting plenty of pressure on the
Bute were denied a stonewall penalty after a good first touch by Fisher sent him clear of the full back who body checked him to the ground inside the D.
The referee blew for a foul but awarded a free hit on the edge of the D to the consternation of all in red.
The home side slowly started to play their way into the game and took the lead after 10 minutes with a low shot evading the clutches of Kevin Queen. Aberdour took heart from this goal and began to exert some pressure of their own and Bute had to fight hard to get back into the game.
The away side’s efforts were rewarded after 18 minutes when Franco Devlin equalised forcing the ball home from close range despite heavy attention from the Aberdour defenders.
Play was flowing from end to end with Aberdour in the ascendency with the wind at their backs and they retook the lead after 24 minutes with a snap shot from a short free hit which rocketed into the top corner again leaving Queen helpless.
Bute were a goal down at the interval with Aberdour having the better of the first half exchanges but buoyed that they would have the wind advantage in the second half.
Bute dominated the majority of the second half with Arron McKirdy, John MacCallum and Craig McKay supplying passes through for their forwards, however the strong tailwind did mean that some of these were just too long.
Any occasion that Aberdour ventured into the Bute half the danger was snuffed out by Arran Dunn, Ryan Craig, Scott Harvey and Chrissy Lawrence.
Bute go the reward that their efforts deserved when another fine long pass by McKirdy was half cleared by the Aberdour defence to MacCallum who clipped the ball wide for Devlin whose low shot somehow evaded the keeper’s legs for the equaliser.
Bute brought on William Boag and Neil McKirdy in search of a winner but found the Aberdour keeper in fine form. Bute were denied another strong penalty shout when McDonald was swung on after the ball was away.
This was another battling performance against a strong Aberdour side in very windy conditions.
Bute are at home to Ballachulish this weekend following on from the second team fixture against Aberdour reserves.
Team:- K Queen, A Dunn, R Craig, S Harvey, C Lawrence, C MacKay, J MacCallum, A McKirdy, J Craig, F Devlin, I McDonald, C Fisher Subs: N McKirdy and W Boag