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Kingussie progress to Artemis Macaulay Cup semi-finals

By Ali Morrison

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Kingussie's Ruaridh Anderson (left) blocked by Duncan WD MacRae (Kinlochshiel) in the head to head - or thereabouts - of the Artemis MacAulay Cup quarter final played at The Dell, Kingussie. Picture: Neil Paterson.
Kingussie's Ruaridh Anderson (left) blocked by Duncan WD MacRae (Kinlochshiel) in the head to head - or thereabouts - of the Artemis MacAulay Cup quarter final played at The Dell, Kingussie. Picture: Neil Paterson.

Three goals during five blistering first half minutes sent Kingussie through to the Artemis Macaulay Cup semi-finals with a 3-0 win over Kinlochshiel at the Dell.

Kingussie are out to go one better than last season’s final defeat to Oban Camanachd and Cameron Bremner returned to the starting team following suspension.

However, injury restricted both Thomas Borthwick and Liam Borthwick to places on the bench whilst Lee Bain was missing.

Kinlochshiel travelled with confidence in the knowledge that it took a late goal Dylan Borthwick for Kingussie to beat them at the same venue on the opening day of the shinty season.

Keith MacRae returned to the ‘Shiel starting line-up after missing the defeat to Skye the previous week whilst Finlay MacRae went to full back after a spell at full centre.

It was an edgy opening as both sides recognised the importance of the opening goal.

Kingussie came close when Savio Genini broke down the right but was brought down by Finlay MacRae just outside the D.

Ruaridh Anderson played the free-hit low across the face of the goal and Savio Genini lost his marker but just couldn’t steer the ball on target at the back post.

At the other end, Rory McGregor had to move smartly to save with his feet and then clear from John MacRae.

Kingussie started to turn the screw and they were awarded a free-hit to the left of the penalty spot on 34 minutes when James Falconer battled for possession.

Ruaridh Anderson slipped the ball inside to Dylan Borthwick who held off his marked before shooting goalwards. Keeper Josh Grant saved with his body, but Savio Genini was first to react as he flicked the ball before volleying home from close range on his backhand.

The goal rocked ‘Shiel and the hosts took advantage as Dylan Borthwick doubled their lead straight from the restart.

Zander Michie played the ball up the Kingussie right where James Falconer sent a great ball inside for Ruaridh Anderson to run on to. Anderson was brought down as he played the ball to Dylan Borthwick, but referee John Angus Gillies played a good advantage and Borthwick had just enough time to steady himself before striking the ball low to the keeper’s left.

Kingussie all but secured their place in the semi-finals just four minutes later as Dylan Borthwick won possession in a central position and he jinked through the visiting defence before slipping the ball home to the delight of the home support.

There was plenty of endeavour from both sides for the remainder of the game, but Kingussie never looked like losing their grip on the tie and they now meet Lovat in the north semi-finals. Oban Camanachd play Glasgow Mid Argyll in the south semi- finals.

Kingussie manager Iain Borthwick said: “It could have gone either way ahead of the first goal, but we ripped them apart in the minutes after the opener.

“Our shinty from back to front was so good and full centre Iain Fraser was outstanding against the classy Donald Nixon. We saw out the second half without any bother.”

Kinlochshiel manager Willie MacRae commented: “I thought we matched Kingussie well, but we had a mad 10 minutes where we lost our composure in defence. Kingussie’s fitness also showed in the end.”

This Saturday, Kingussie travel to Braeview Park to play Beauly in the Tulloch Homes Camanachd Cup quarter-finals.

Throw up is at the later time of 4.30pm.

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