Shocks galore in Camanachd Cup
As final whistles blew across the country on Saturday, the Scottish Hydro Camanachd Cup second round had finished - with a few surprise results up its sleeve.
For Fort William, Saturday 2 June marked the 20th anniversary since Fort William first lifted the Camanachd Cup in an epic final known as the 'Sunshine final' at Glasgow's Old Anniesland.
Derek 'Deek' Cameron was the Fort William hero that day, scoring the fastest goal in shinty history after only nine seconds to win the match.
In 2004 shinty changed from a winter sport to a summer sport with the final now held in September.
Fort William were drawn to meet local rivals Kilmallie at the Canal Parks.
Fort William beat Kilmallie in the 2005 Camanachd Cup Final at An Aird, which did not please one side of the river Lochy.
And this was the first time the two had met head-to-head in the same competition since that final.
Unfortunately for Fort William, in all my days as a player I cannot remember a week where so many players were unavailable through, injury, suspension or work commitments.
With seven players out, Fort manager Peter Macintyre was left with no choice but to field a new-look team and pray.
His prayers were not answered!
Daniel Stewart opened the scoring for Fort before Kilmallie's John Stewart levelled before half time.
As fate would have it, Michael Rodgers then put Kilmallie ahead.
Michael's father, 'Sun-Shine' Rodgers, a legend at Fort William Shinty Club, played a key role in defence as part of Fort's 1992 Camanachd Cup-winning squad, who, I'm sure is now wishing he had baptised his boy in 'yellow and black'!
However, it was the blue and white Kilmallie colours that were draped through Fort William High St on Saturday night, as Liam MacDonald finished off the day's scoring to see the Caol side progress through to the last 16.
The big cup shock of the day, however, was Premiership side Glenurquhart crashing out to North Division 1 side, Skye.
Glen's co-manager Drew MacNeil, who captained and lifted the Camanachd Cup for Fort William in the 1992 final, would not have dreamt of losing to the islanders.
Neale Reid opened the scoring for 'Glen before Alan Palmer levelled only a minute later.
The winner, which has been described as a wonder goal, from teenager Jordan Murchison on the stroke of half time, incredibly took Skye through to the quarter finals.
Glasgow Mid Argyll also very nearly casued an upset when they held Kyles Athletic to a 1-1 draw.
Robbie MacLeod opened for Kyles, who then led for most of the match, before Andy Mathie's late strike gave GMA a replay in two weeks time.
Kinlochshiel and Kingussie also go to a replay after their match finished with the same scoreline.
Ronald Ross opened for Kings after only seven minutes but neither he nor his teammates could find a second.
John MacRae levelled for 'Shiel, with the replay to be held at Kingusse's ground, The Dell.
North Division 1 side, Lochaber, continued their fine run of form over Premiership strugglers Bute.
A Ben Delaney strike followed by a hat-trick from Stuart Callison, saw the Spean Bridge boys breeze through 4-0.
There were no cup shocks with Premiership clubs Lovat, Newtonmore and Inveraray who also all progressed through to reach the last sixteen without fuss.
Looking ahead to this weekend's fixtures, in the Orion Group Premiership Lovat host league leaders Newtonmore, where a win will leapfrog the Kiltarlty side into top spot.
At the other end of the table, Kilmallie have home advantage in the battle at the bottom against Bute.
Both clubs desperately need points and know only a win will do if either are to stand a chance of Premiership survival.
In the Artemis MacAulay Cup Quarter finals, Glasgow Mid-Argyll face Inveraray, while Glenurquhart battle Kingussie at Drumnadrochit.
Fort William welcome Kinlochshiel to the Black Parks.
Fort William will be without key players again this weekend, although I am happy to be back joining the boys after a two week musical absence.
The Olympic Torch will also be passing by the field at the time of play, which I am hoping won't be the only thing that's alight on Saturday afternoon.
On that note, I'd like to pass on my best wishes to David 'Macka' MacPherson from Inveraray Shinty Club who is a torch barer at INVERURIE!
The Olympic committee decided he should carry the torch after his fantastic charity work and beating testicular cancer, however they got confused as to his location.
'Macka', as always, couldn't care less about the confusion, and is honoured to play his part.
Safe travels to all clubs and supporters.