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Another hair-raising week in shinty

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Gary Innes | 13:34 UK time, Monday, 19 March 2012

Last year's champions Newtonmore sit top of the Orion Premiership on goal difference after a 4-2 home win over Kinlochshiel.

Newtonmore exploded into a 3-0 lead after only 30 minutes through a David Cheyne double, followed by a Danny Macrae strike.

Finlay Macrae did manage to pull two back for the visitors, however Steven MacDonald put the final nail in the Shiel coffin with his 76th-minute strike to ensure both points went to 'More.

Beauly v Kinlochshiel

Beauly v Kinlochshiel

Bute welcomed Kilmallie in their first Premiership match at home since 2010.

After travelling from Lochaber to the Isle of Bute, the Caol side could only muster a share of the points.

Liam Macdonald opened the scoring in under two minutes for the away team with the score remaining the same for over an hour.

Bute finally equalised on 69 minutes through Robert Walker, but this did not last long as Michael Rodgers put Kilmallie ahead once more, this time from the spot.

With only minutes remaining, Hector Whitelaw found the back of the net for the islanders to tie the game 2-2.

Kyles Athletic got their first points on the board with an impressive 6-1 away win over Glenurquhart.

Ewen Campbell opened the scoring for the visitors, followed by doubles from John Whyte, Thomas Whyte, and Peter Currie putting the icing on the cake.

Glen's David Smart did pull one back for the Drum men, but the points and pints were heading home to Tighnabruiach.

Fort William switched their home tie against Kingussie to the Dell early last week to ensure this fixture would go ahead.

Fort started this season with key players missing during the opening two fixtures and were confident on having a full squad.

It was a beautiful day in Kingussie and, after having just watched Fort 2nds beat Kingussie with a 90th minute top corner, we were hoping for the same kind of fortune.

The visitors started the stronger of the two sides and the battle of the midfield was swinging in Fort's favour with Alex Duncan, and brother combo, Niall and Aaron Macphee, running the show.

Fort's first goal came through a long ball from midfield touched on to Daniel Stewart, who seemed to have caught keeper Andrew Borthwick flat footed, as he was rooted to the spot as the ball whizzed by him.

And Fort's new recruit, Scott Henderson, formally of Ballahulish, got his first taste of a Kings v Fort derby, and scored for Fort with a lovely first touch to skip by Kings' last defender and slot the ball into the corner.

From the resulting throw up the ball landed at yours truly, and I managed to gain a few yards before passing through to Henderson, who beat Borthwick for the second time in as many minutes to put the game out of reach for Kingussie.

Kings tried time and time again to break down Fort's defence but found them in outstanding form.

Martin Dallas came closest to scoring for Kingussie when his shot rifled inches past the post, with Fort's defence only letting one shot trouble Mackay in the sticks all day.

Looking ahead to this weekend's Premiership action.

Lovat host Bute at Kiltarlity, while Newtonmore travel to Inveraray. Kinlochshiel hope to play their first home fixture against Glenurquhart, while Kyles take on Kingussie at Tighnabruich.

Fort William start their Mactavish Cup campaign a week earlier than the rest when they face North Division Caberfeidh at the Black Parks.

This is due to Fort defender Neil Robertson getting hitched the following weekend.

Caberfeidh, who drew at the weekend with North Division 1 league leaders Beauly, will be eager to test Fort at the Black Parks where conditions may possibly even suit the North side.

With the park being short and narrow, the strong Fort midfield often get bypassed which in turn clogs up the forwards.

Before I go, a special mention has to go to one man, with a vow that was meant to spur on his team mates and never dreamed it would last so long.

Glenorchy's keeper Andrew Smith needed a haircut two games in to their Premier league campaign of 2011 and vowed not to get his locks cut off until they won a match.

Poor Andrew had no idea that his club would then lose all 18 consecutive league fixtures, and get knocked out of every cup at the first hurdle!

This in turn meant the Dalmally men would not win a match in over a year!

However, this run of poor form was finally broken when Andrew and his Glenorchy team mates beat Oban Celtic 2-1.

Andrew then raced to the barbers to get his mane managed, and has vowed never to make such a statement again.

You can read more on this story and see Andrew's before and after shots at http://www.spanglefish.com/GlenorchyCamanachd/news.asp

So, I think, in Andrew's honour, and for a laugh, we should all make a vow to our clubs until your team wins.

Let's hear what your vows will be.

Safe travels to all clubs and supporters.

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