Shinty: Glenurquhart clinch historic MacTavish Cup win

By Charles BannermanBBC Scotland
Glenurquhart celebrate their MacTavish Cup success
Glenurquhart lost to Lovat in the 2013 and 2014 MacTavish Cup finals

Glenurquhart won the RBS MacTavish Cup for the first time in the trophy's 117-year history with a 3-1 defeat of Newtonmore at Bught Park, Inverness.

Fraser Heath fired Glen ahead in the first half as they cashed in on a red card for Newtonmore's Jamie Robinson for hitting an opponent with his stick.

Ewan Brady made it 2-0 after the break, and though Paul MacArthur pulled one back for Newtonmore Neale Reid clinched it for Glenurquhart.

Glen lost the final in 2013 and 2014.

On both occasions they were defeated by Lovat, on penalties two years ago and by five goals to one last year.

They also lost the 2014 Camanachd Cup final 4-0 to Kingussie at the same venue so manager Billy MacLean was relieved that their Bught Park hoodoo had finally been laid to rest.

"It does feel really good," he said. "We've waited so long for this and it means an awful lot.

"Losing these earlier finals has maybe built us up to enjoy this all the more. There was some talk of us bottling it but I think the way it's happened has made it all the better."

The first significant incident of the game was the 18th-minute dismissal of Robinson who lashed out at Ali MacKintosh and was instantly red carded by referee Evan MacRae.

Robinson, whilst Newtonmore captain, was previously sent off in the 2013 MacAulay Cup final following a similar incident during a throw-up.

Just seven minutes after the ordering off, Heath's 20-yard diagonal shot gave Glen the lead as they pressed home their one-man advantage.

Newtonmore fought back strongly at the start of the second half, but the game soon turned Glenurquhart's way again. Heath had the ball in the net once more but the offside flag was up and on either side of this Reid missed golden opportunities.

In the final quarter, Glenurquhart made their man advantage pay once again when, with Newtonmore keeper Michael Ritchie already committed, Brady was able to tap the ball into an empty net.

However, the two-goal cushion lasted for just two minutes when MacArthur made it 2-1 from 25 yards. And a further minute later Reid, on the third time of asking, at last found the target to make the final score 3-1 as Glenurquhart lifted the shinty season's first major trophy.

Elsewhere, Fort William ran up their fourth consecutive win in the Marine Harvest Premiership on a 1-0 scoreline at Inveraray.

Alexander MacMillan scored in the first half and Fort's run has now seen them rise from bottom of the table to third, two points behind Newtonmore and they only trail Lovat on goals scored.

That was because Lovat failed to take anything at all from their home match against Kinlochshiel, who had Mark MacDonald on target in the first half and Fraser MacVicar in the last minute.

Shiel leapfrogged Kingussie into the top half of the table after the Badenoch side's goalless draw with Lochaber.

Kilmallie had a 2-0 win on Bute in the Balliemore Cup.

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