There is no doubt that the game was popular at various stages virtually nation-wide, from the wind-swept rocks of St Kilda to the more hospitable and gentler plains of the Borders; from Wimbledon Common to Manchester, in a fantasy world of Celtic twilight. Indeed, it is claimed that golf was perhaps born out of shinty players practicing, alone or in pairs, the art of driving the ball with the caman, or stick.
The game is also to be found on the worldwide stage with exiles taking the game to the furthest flung corners of the globe. That shinty has survived the combined assaults of Royal edicts against popular and `uncontrollable' games, as well as the Sabbatarianism following the Reformation and the outlawing of sports on the day of rest is a tribute to the people involved in the setting up of the organisation which drew this intriguing web of wayward strands together in the 1890s - the Camanachd Association, shinty's ruling body.
A series of hugely interesting and memorable exhibition matches in the preceding two decades ago were the immediate catalyst leading to the formation of the Association which has seen shinty develop from a series of loosely organised clubs and structures, into a progressive organisation with some forty clubs competing on a regular basis.
By the end of the century, greater mobility, mainly due to improved means of transport, helped to make the game more popular and gradually games began to be organised between clubs located at considerable distances apart. Gradually the local rivalries began to be replaced with a more competitive, ambitious atmosphere.
The match was played at a venue no longer in sporting use in Inverness, a park at Needlefield, a piece of ground situated between Longman Road and Cromwell's Fort, near the current harbour area. The day was practically observed as a holiday in Kingussie. A special train that conveyed the team to Inverness brought over 400 people to see the contest. From the whole Highland area, they gathered in droves, “an unwonted number of wearers of kilt and knickerbocker.” The Glasgow team arrived on Friday night to be in trim for the contest.
On a murky Saturday, drizzling rain rendered the playing pitch slippery. Notwithstanding the charge of a shilling, crowds had flocked to the match, and there were around 1000 in attendance, producing gate receipts of £41.
Cowal started well and the Kingussie team looked unsettled. Cowal's striking was sharp and sure. Again and again Dallas of Kingussie, by most determined and really brilliant play, averted danger, frustrating his opponents.
The Badenoch men however began to play to some purpose and with more method. Encouraged by the slogans of their enthusiastic supporters, and with a defence seemingly impregnable, and the Kingussie forwards, no doubt inspired by the brilliant play of their own defence, re-awaken to a sense of their responsibility and opportunity. Ultimately, with a dash and impetuosity that was well nigh irresistible, the men from Badenoch press their opponents, and William Ross has the satisfaction of scoring the first goal for Kingussie, after seventeen minutes' play.
News of the victory was received with much satisfaction in Kingussie and district, and the players were accorded an ovation on their return, pipers playing lively airs, and others carrying lighted torches, assembling at the train station, and marching through the town, while bonfires were lighted above the burgh and two on the farm of Dunachton.