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Clach draw felt like two points dropped for Thurso manager


By Alan Hendry

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Andy Hardwick scores Thurso's second goal against Clachnacuddin 'A' with a powerful header. Picture: James Gunn
Andy Hardwick scores Thurso's second goal against Clachnacuddin 'A' with a powerful header. Picture: James Gunn

Thurso manager Scott Davidson admitted Saturday's 3-3 draw with Clachnacuddin "A" in the North Caledonian League felt like two points dropped rather than one gained.

The Vikings were 3-1 up with half an hour gone at the Dammies but the Inverness side pulled one back on the stroke of half-time and equalised just after the hour mark.

Andrew Brims finished off a brilliant move in the fifth minute to put Thurso in front. Scott MacIver made it 1-1 after 13 minutes, but Andy Hardwick headed in the Vikings' second three minutes later and Liam Bain increased their lead on 28 minutes with a shot from outside the box.

Clach hit back with goals from Finlay Mackenzie and Ross Gordon.

"Although it's a point gained, it does feel like two points dropped, if I'm being perfectly honest," Davidson said.

"We went 1-0 up with one of the better team goals I've seen Thurso scoring in the last few years. It was a really good build-up, one-touch football, and then young Andrew Brims slotted it across goal into the far corner.

"Once again we were maybe just trying to overplay it in the defensive area. We gave away a silly free kick and they ended up scoring off the back of that.

Cameron Montgomery lifts up goalscorer Liam Bain. Picture: James Gunn
Cameron Montgomery lifts up goalscorer Liam Bain. Picture: James Gunn

"To score two goals and go 3-1 up, you'd think that we would be pushing for the three points, but we conceded right before half-time. Again maybe it was poor game management in the defensive area – we just never got rid of the ball and they ended up scoring literally with the last kick of the first half.

"It was an awful time to concede. If we go in 3-1 up, that makes my team talk a lot easier. But their tails were up then.

"We probably dominated the first 10 minutes of the second half and they ended up scoring again against the run of play.

"Maybe in the end neither team deserved to get beaten. We both had chances to win it, so maybe on reflection a draw was a fair result.

"But I feel a bit aggrieved at not picking up the three points after such a positive start to the game.

"There are plenty of positives. We scored three goals but the goals conceded are probably avoidable.

"The team is starting to gel together now. Obviously we have a lot of younger guys within the squad and this is their first or second year in the North Caley."

Brims and Bain scored their first goals for the club.

Thurso's Darren Sheppard is hauled back by Ross Gordon of Clachnacuddin 'A'. Picture: James Gunn
Thurso's Darren Sheppard is hauled back by Ross Gordon of Clachnacuddin 'A'. Picture: James Gunn

Thurso remain at the foot of the table. They are away to third-from-bottom Alness United this weekend.

"We beat them [4-2] on the first day of the season," Davidson said. "I don't know how much their team will have changed from then, but certainly we'll be going down looking to get three points and start climbing up the table.

"We've got a home game against Bonar Bridge [on December 2] and then a run of three away games against Golspie, Fort William and Loch Ness all back to back."

The Naver all-weather pitch in Thurso is the neutral venue for Saturday's match between Orkney and Fort William, with a 2.15pm kick-off.

North Caledonian League results: Invergordon 3, Fort William 0; Inverness Athletic 4, Golspie 2; Orkney 3, Alness United 3; Loch Ness 4, St Duthus 2; Thurso 3, Clachnacuddin "A" 3.

North Caledonian League fixtures for Saturday, November 25: Alness United v Thurso (1pm); Bonar Bridge v Inverness Athletic; Clachnacuddin “A” v Loch Ness; Halkirk United v Invergordon (1pm); Orkney v Fort William (Naver, Thurso, 2.15pm); St Duthus v Golspie.

Saleem Bremner battles for the ball. Picture: James Gunn
Saleem Bremner battles for the ball. Picture: James Gunn

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