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Lochaber make history but Newtonmore get the glory

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Gary Innes | 19:30 UK time, Monday, 18 June 2012

Newtonmore lifted the Co-operative MacTavish Cup on Saturday after a convincing 5-1 victory over Lochaber.

This was North Division 1 Lochaber's first senior final since the club was reformed in 1958. It was an incredible day for the village of Spean Bridge, with people traveling from all over the world to come home for the historic event.

It was a special day in the Innes household with my little brother Hughie captaining the team out onto the Bught Parks, Inverness and in front of him was the Lochaber Camanachd chieftain - our Granny!

It was Newtonmore though that stamped their name in the record books, with captain John Mackenzie lifting high above his head the first silverware of the shinty calendar.

Newtonmore captain John Mackenzie lifts the MacTavish Cup

Newtonmore captain John Mackenzie lifts the MacTavish Cup

Glen Macintosh opened the scoring virtually from the throw-up, shortly followed by a Chris Sellar goal to stun the Spean Bridge men. Sellar went on to double his tally in the second half, topped up by goals from 'More skipper Mackenzie, and Danny MacCrae.

Scotland forward Sean Nicholson did find the net for Lochaber, however Newtonmore were not going to be stopped proving once more there dominance in the sport.

In the Orion Group Premiership, incredibly the tables have turned once more with Kyles Athletic now the front-runners after beating Inveraray 4-1.

It was Whyte delight for brothers Gordon, Thomas, and John, who all found the net before Euan McMurdo pulled one back for Inveraray. Robbie MacLeod put the finishing touch on the scoresheet for Kyles with a late penalty to wrap up both points for the Tighnabruaich men.

Last week's leaders Lovat were stunned at home after being defeated at the hands of Kilmallie. Michael Rodgers was once more the Kilmallie hit-man as his single goal lifted the Caol team out of the bottom two for the first time in months.

Glenurquhart now join Bute in the bottom two of the Premiership after Fort William claimed victory at Drumnadrochit.

The hosts started by far the stronger of the two sides, however it was Fort's Ryan Campbell whose speculative shot seemed to evade both defender and keeper to rest in the corner of the net. Campbell doubled his lead minutes later to give Fort a two-goal cushion before half-time.

Fort William started the second half better than the first but were reduced to 11 men when Mark Grant was red-carded for his second yellow card offence.

As 'Glen used their spare man to push forward, Fort scored a third against the run of play through myself. James MacPherson did find the net for 'Glen late on, however it was Fort William who took the points with a 3-1 win.

Andrew MacCuish secured the last MacAulay Cup semi-final spot for Oban Camanachd with a double over islanders Bute. Camanachd now face Inveraray on 7 July.

With Shinty's North MacTavish final now done and dusted, it's time this week for the South's AJG Parcels Celtic Society Cup final.

This year's showpiece will be contested between Inveraray and Taynuilt.

Like Lochaber last weekend, this will be Taynuilt's first ever senior final. Inveraray Shinty Club play a division above Taynuilt and will start favourites. However when it comes to a final, anything can happen.

You can catch all the action live from Strachur on BBC ALBA from 16:00 BST.

In the Orion Group Premiership, Kilmallie travel to Glenurquhart in a very interesting match-up. Kilmallie have won their last three matches in a row, while Glenurquhart, who have three games in hand over Kilmallie, trail one point behind them in the relegation zone.

In the only other Premiership match, Newtonmore travel down to Fort William. Fresh off the back of their MacTavish Cup victory, 'More will hopefully still be tipsy from their celebrations when they visit the Black Parks.

Fort have not yet fielded the same team twice in a row this season and there will be no exception this weekend as defender Neil Robertson suns it up in Turkey.

In the Camanachd Cup replays, Kingussie take on Kinlochshiel at the Dell while Kyles Athletic take on GMA at Tighnabruaich.

Safe travels to all clubs and supporters.

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