Celtic Society final has the makings of a classic contest

By Gary InnesFort William shinty wing centre

Shinty fans can expect a feast of goals when Kyles meet Inveraray in the AJG Parcels Celtic Society final in Glasgow on Saturday.

The same two sides met in the final last year as well, with Kyles claiming the silverware that day after a penalty shootout.

Both of theses teams are packed with talent, including some of the fastest forwards in the sport, so it should be a cracking contest at Old Anniesland.

And I wonder if Kyles will have the edge thanks to their camans, which according to readers are the best in the business.

Last week I asked for your opinions on shinty sticks and the Kyles caman, from Tighnabruaich, got the most votes.

I've never used a Kyles stick before, but when 'Excalibur' breaks I'll be sure to give one a whirl.

There was more silverware handed out last weekend and it went to Lovat, who retained the MacTavish Cup with a 5-1 routing of Glenurquhart at Inverness' Bught Parks.

A huge congratulations goes to the men from Kiltarlity.

Glenurquhart beat Lovat a few weeks ago in the league but just did not seem to get started in the final, and the game had run away from the Drumnadrochit men before they managed to claw a goal back to make it 4-1.

There is also a tasty looking derby match in the league in Lochaber, as Fort William make their way over the river Lochy to the Canal Parks in Caol to face Kilmallie.

Both clubs need to win this one to keep up their title bids in the National Division, as they chase promotion back up to Shinty's top flight.

A derby match between Fort William and Kilmallie always draws a large crowd, expecting and hopeful to see a dose of blood and guts.

Shinty has changed, though, even during the period of time that I have played.

I think the switch from winter to summer shinty has been the key factor, with drier, shorter cut fields making the game so much faster.

Thankfully the days of lumberjacks chopping down lads' legs are gradually disappearing.

This is still what many people think of when a Fort William v Kilmallie derby match comes around, but nowadays these sides are full of exciting young players and it is their skills that will be on show this weekend.

So, if you are thinking you will be coming to watch Lochaber's equivalent of Gladiators, you are 10 years too late.

However, if you fancy seeing a great game of shinty, then get along to the Canal Parks for a 2pm throw up.

Let's hope I'm not retracting this statement this time next week.

Safe travels to all clubs and supporters.