Orsten Gardner tipped for Newtonmore top job
NEWTONMORE second team boss Orsten Gardner now appears to be in pole position to take charge of the Eilan club's senior team.
Gardner led his side to the North Division One title on Saturday after the Blue and Whites beat Aberdeen University 7-0.
They had gone into the clash knowing they needed to win by five clear goals against the bottom club to claim the crown for a fourth successive season.
Manager Gardner said: "I was delighted to get over the line. It's been a tough, tough season for us and to win the league is an amazing achievement with the squad we have had. The youngsters have been nothing short of fantastic.
"Hopefully the pups will keep the winning streak going and lift the London Shield."
He admitted that it was not their best performance on Saturday but it was the result that mattered most.
"We were a bit over keen at times because of the situation. We knew we had to get five goals and we were panicking at times rather than playing our own game. We were over-hitting the ball and too eager to shoot."
Gardner said that he had set a target of three goals before the break with the rest to come in the second period and the intention of keeping out the university side.
"I think some people thought going into the game that it was going to be a cake-walk and we would put 13 or 14 goals past Aberdeen University. But we were realistic and knew that would not be the case."
Skipper Craig MacLeod weighed in with a captain's performance, scoring in the ninth, 50th, 59th and 70th minutes.
The other goals came from first team hitman Glen MacKintosh in the 38th, 80th and 85th minutes.
He admitted that he was fearful that the students could snatch a goal as 'More had to wait until the 80th minute to get some breathing space.
But looking back, Gardner said: "They did not cause us any problems going forward."
It later emerged that Gardner was at this time the leading contender to take over in the hot seat following PJ Mackintosh's decision to stand down after seven highly successful years.
Forward Glen Mackintosh believes that it would be a popular appointment. He said: "Orsten has done a great job with the second team over the last few years.
"It is a big step up but I know that everyone connected with the club would give him their support."
PJ Mackintosh's results speak for themselves in his time in charge: five Premier league titles in seven years, five Camanachd Cup wins, the last four Mactavish cups and two Macaulay cups.
The club's AGM is on Tuesday 17th December in the Balavil Hotel when nominations will be taken and voted for to fill the vacant manager's post.