Kinlochspiel 1-3 Inverary: Quickfire Inveraray book Camanachd Cup final slot
In SPORT, as in comedy, timing can be everything and Inveraray got it just right on Saturday to book their place in the final of the 2012 Scottish Hydro Camanachd Cup.
Opponents Kinlochshiel were looking to make history by reaching their first ever final but knew they were up against a side with “previous” in this competition.
Ultimately, it was goals at text-book times from Inveraray that did for the Balmacara youngsters and Inveraray must now feel they have a golden chance to emulate their cup victory of 2004 at the same venue – Oban’s Mossfield Park.
Ask any sports psychologist and they will tell you that an early goal or an early impact in a major event can give a protagonist a surge of confidence while digging up demons in an opponent’s mind.
Garry Macpherson gave Inveraray that lift by hitting the net in one minute with a more difficult strike than one he scuffed a few minutes later.
If Kinlochshiel had any doubts before the game, they were surfacing at that point and Inveraray hit them with a double blow through Euan McMurdo three minutes later.
“You could not ask more than to go two up within five minutes of a semi-final,” said Macpherson. “It takes the pressure off and forces the other team to respond.”
Inveraray’s on-field mastery was in direct contrast to the organisational shambles that delayed their arrival in Fort William. A 52-seated bus they hired for the journey was involved in an accident with a caravan before it even reached Loch Fyneside to take them to the game.
As a result, the club’s tight mini bus had to be drafted in as a replacement with remaining players using their own cars – hardly the unified presence they had wanted. It clearly made little difference to their mental state, which is perhaps the mark of a team that can take the punches and move on.
Johnston Gill’s Kinlochshiel did get a goal back through Scotland man Keith McRae to make it 2-1 at half time. Again, though, it was that man MacPherson who completed the afternoon’s work with a goal for Inveraray just after half-time – another crucial moment to get a goal. “We knew we just had to hang on after that,” said MacPherson. “We have one trophy already. Now we have a chance in the big one.”
They will face the winner of next week’s semi between Kyles and Newtonmore.
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Tuesday 21 May 2013
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