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Relegation may be an act of mercy for beleaguered Greens

By Matt Leslie

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The spectre of relegation from National League Three loomed larger for the Greens as they received a 114-0 battering at Ardrossan Accies.

Granted Accies are currently in contention for promotion and were heavy favourites to win Saturday's match but the magnitude of this thumping will have the most optimistic of Caithness fans praying for a miracle.

Injuries have wreaked havoc upon the squad, and chopping and changing with the head coach's position since Tom McGee left a year ago has not helped.

However, excuses can only stretch so far and, despite the odd good result – such as the previous week's victory against fellow strugglers Perthshire – if Caithness are simply to serve as "target practice" for sides like Ardrossan, maybe demotion back to the Caledonia League would be an act of mercy.

Given that the likes of key players Marc Anderson and Evan Sutherland will be out injured until February, all may well be lost in the battle for survival when they return to the fold.

Carrick, who look certain to be doomed to relegation, are their opponents on Saturday.

Despite attempts to contact head coach Ewen Boyd and team manager Garry Anderson, no-one from the club was available for comment as the John O'Groat Journal went to press.

Ardrossan meanwhile are in a place the Greens can only dream of as they lie in second spot, five behind league leaders Greenock Wanderers.

A whopping 18 tries were run in against a Caithness defence serving as cannon fodder. Try scorers for Accies were Stuart Lamont (4), Bruce Hunter (2), Robert Hunter (2), Ruairdh Anderson (2), Neil Monaghan (2), Ian Kerr (2), Gordon Telfer, Scott Campbell, Harry MacDonald and Owen Phillips. Robert Hunter kicked over 24 points – all conversions.

Not surprisingly, Ardrossan's Facebook page conveyed a sense of delight but also damned Caithness with faint praise by posting: "Thanks to Caithness Rugby Club for making the long trip down and sticking in and making life difficult for the boys."

If keeping the score down to 114-0 was "making life difficult", calculators the world over would be overheating had the Greens made life easy for Accies.

Elsewhere, in the only other fixture to survive the cold snap, Greenock Wanderers defeated Perthshire 49-24.

National League Three fixtures for Saturday, December 7, 2019 (all kick-offs 2pm):

Berwick v Murrayfield Wanderers

Caithness v Carrick

Hillhead/Jordanhill v Strathmore

Lasswade v Greenock Wanderers

Perthshire v Ardrossan Academicals

West of Scotland v Howe of Fife

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