FOR THOSE ABOUT TO ‘BROCH

HOME GAME v FRASERBURGH FC
BREEDON HIGHLAND LEAGUE
SEAFIELD PARK, GRANTOWN-ON-SPEY, PH26 3HY
SATURDAY 13 APRIL 2024 – KO 3pm

Well here we go – the last week and with four games to complete our league season as far as finishes go this must be up there with THE most difficult ever!! …..mind you as demanding finishes go the focus must be on Buckie Thistle who will be playing six games in twelve days to finish their season off – in comparison to rivals Brechin and Fraserburgh who play three games and Banks O’ Dee with two. 
In the Highland League there is usually some congestion of fixtures at this time of the season, but this is quite exceptional in Buckie’s case. – various factors have contributed to this scenario, some of their own doing unfortunately.
It is a very exciting contest this year – as it is most years in the HL – with Brechin, Fraserburgh, Bank’s O’ Dee and Buckie all vying for top spot…so by playing two of the teams in contention twice this week, Strathspey Thistle will play a major part in realising where the league flag will be unfurled at the start of next season. 
The reason for this end of season compressed set of fixtures for us all is that because Buckie are in contention for the league title, the title must be won by April 20 so as to enable the Breedon Highland League winners to go forward to a home and away play-off against the winning team from the Lowland League as part of the SFA’s pyramid system. The winners of that tie, play home and away against the bottom club in League Two of the Scottish League and the victors book a place in next year’s League Two, hopefully following in the footsteps of Cove Rangers, Bonnyrigg Rose etc.

THIS SATURDAY’S GAME AGAINST FRASERBURGH FC
So with Fraserburgh hunting the league title we can’t see them showing any mercy, so we have to go into the match with the same attitude we have had playing in some of the games against the top teams already this season….we expect a really tough game but hopefully we can get something from it perhaps not a win but a close game and a good performance. The weather forecast is for the sun to be shining and a blue sky – hopefully, fingers crossed it is correct and the fans of both teams can at least be dry as opposed to being soaked and cold!
Fraserburgh are motoring on just fine in the race for the league title and currently sit in second place, with Buckie Thistle, three points behind leaders Brechin City with three games to play. Today is the first of two games in a week against the ‘Broch, as we finish our league campaign next Saturday in Fraserburgh.
I would imagine we will also be welcoming a very strong ‘Broch following on Saturday, and if if there are any newbies to Grantown or any wanting a resumé of what is available in Grantown click here for a reminder. Safe journeys!   
Unfortunately, Jags caretaker manager Mike Rae may be struggling to put together his ideal eleven for the final four fixtures, especially with the way the games have come about over the past few weeks, injuries have taken their toll as well as some players moving on….

WHAT OF NEXT SEASON….. 
We will finish bottom of the league no matter what happens – and being part of the SFA’s pyramid system, retaining our position in the Highland League for next season and what is happening in the Midlands League in the Dundee, Fife and Angus (!) area is what concerns us most…. 
The fortunes of Broughty Athletic FC and Lochee Utd FC are especially important….because if Lochee win the league then we must play them home and away in a play-off tie for that place in the Highland League…Dundee based Lochee have the necessary criteria in place and intimated, as all clubs have to, their intentions at the start of the season that they would join the Highland League if they won their league title.
Broughty Athletic did not – and currently with three games left Broughty sit on top of the league eight points ahead of Lochee, but, Lochee have two games in hand…so it’s going to be an exciting finish in that league too!!

DIARY DATES
As indicated last week, this week’s games are comin’ at ye thick and fast….Buckie Monday night away, Buckie Wednesday night home, both 8 pm kick off, and we finish off at Fraserburgh next Saturday afternoon.
With thoughts turning towards the summer and with the Master’s in Augusta this weekend  on television a date to pencil in is the STFC Golf Day which takes place this year on Saturday 13 July at Grantown-on-Spey Golf Club. Full details will be available soon. 

LAST SATURDAY AWAY TO TURRIFF UTD

It was another disappointing Saturday. Playing both a very good Turriff side and a strong wind in the first half we were four down by the interval. We hoped with the wind behind our backs in the second half we may make a bit of a comeback especially when Owen Loveland 

Jags goalscorer Owen Loveland

scored four minutes into the second half, but it was not to be and Turriff scored a further three goals after that making the final score 7-1 to Turra….

LOTTERY
As ever we conclude this week’s meanderings offering you a jackpot win of £5400 on our online fundraising lottery – click here if you want to play…

LOTTERY CH-CH-CHANGES
As intimated a couple of months ago after the current jackpot, has been won, so completing that game there will be couple of changes.

There will still be a weekly prize of £100 for a consolation winner if their entry matches four of the five numbers drawn, however instead of a weekly increase in the jackpot of £100, this will now be increased monthly. 

The game is to forecast 5 winning numbers, which are drawn at random, from 1-20. The 5 numbers chosen are to be marked by a cross (X).

  1. The Jackpot prize starts at £1,000 and the game continues until it is won and starts afresh. As applicable, the Jackpot increases by £100 immediately after the first draw in each calendar month, up to a maximum of £5,000. The Jackpot is then capped at £5,000 until it is won in a weekly draw. 
  2. If more than one player has 5 winning numbers, the Jackpot will be divided equally among the winning players. 
  3. Should no entry forecast all 5 winning numbers, then any player matching 4 numbers will be entered into a draw for a single Consolation Prize of £100
  4. THE DRAW will take place every SUNDAY at 7pm unless otherwise advised.
  5. The entrant named on the ticket must be at least 16 years of age.
  6. All winners will be notified.

TURRIFFICA

AWAY GAME v TURRIFF UNITED FC
BREEDON HIGHLAND LEAGUE
THE HAUGHS, QUEEN’S ROAD, TURRIFF, AB53 4EF
SATURDAY 6 APRIL 2024 – KO 3pm

As we enter April the league begins to draw to a close and this week we visit The Haughs and Turriff United.  This time we hope to play a good bit better than we did did when we last met at Seafield Park in November, when we were hammered by eight goals to one – not an afternoon we want to remember.

So, hopefully, Mike and the rest of the gang will be able to curb the enthusiasm of the Turra team and put in a good shift so we can leave with heads held high, home for a few days respite!
After Turriff on Saturday we have four games left and a busy seven days it is going to be…..on Saturday the 13th we have Fraserburgh, currently in second place in the league at Seafield Park, followed by fellow title contenders Buckie Thistle at Buckie on Monday 15th then it’s back to Seafield Park on Wednesday 17th for our home match against Buckie then culminating on the Saturday the 20th with the away match at Fraserburgh….not the ending any team would want to finish their league campaign with, especially the one that is sitting on the bottom of the table……but as we always say you just never know in football….and having said that, Buckie will be playing ten games between the March 20 and April 20…!!…and as they also say….it’s tough at the top!


FINAL DATES FOR YOUR FOOTBALL DIARY THIS YEAR
So to recap with confirmed dates from the Highland League are the following rearranged fixtures.
Saturday April 13 v Fraserburgh (H) KO 3pm
Monday April 15 Buckie Thistle (A) KO 8pm
Wednesday April 17 v Buckie Thistle (H) KO 8pm
Saturday April 20 v Fraserburgh (A) KO 3pm, our scheduled last game of the season.

LAST SATURDAY’S GAME v NAIRN COUNTY 

Even although our drainage system is admired by many, sometimes the elements fight against you as was the occurrence we had last week at Seafield Park. We had a huge downpour thirty minutes before kick off during the pre-match warm up which continued more or less throughout the first half –  the result of which was a mightily ripped up Seafield Park as the photo taken on Sunday morning shows ….but the second half was a calm spring afternoon with blue sky…..the joys of a Scottish “spring” –
As I reported earlier in the week Nairn managed the conditions better and were well worthy of their 3-0 lead by half time. The Jags more or less dominated much of the second half and had four really excellent scoring chances, none of which were converted unfortunately and a very good penalty shout, before Nairn scored again in the dying minutes of the game.

Seafield Park on Sunday morning after Saturday’s torrential rain.

Sadly, the weather conditions turned most of the pitch into a quagmire and with that, the obvious damage to the playing surface. With ten days to our next home match we’re hoping that the weather will now be kind and help the pitchfixers in their task of getting the surface back to the condition it was before.

LOTTERY

This week  we are offering you a jackpot win of £5300 on our online fundraising lottery – click here if you want to play…

LOTTERY CH-CH-CHANGES

After the current jackpot has been won therefore completing that game there will be couple of changes.
There will still be a weekly prize of £100 for a consolation winner if their entry matches four of the five numbers drawn, however instead of a weekly increase in the jackpot of £100, this will now be increased monthly. 
The game is to forecast 5 winning numbers, which are drawn at random, from 1-20. The 5 numbers chosen are to be marked by a cross (X).

  1. The Jackpot prize starts at £1,000 and the game continues until it is won and starts afresh. As applicable, the Jackpot increases by £100 immediately after the first draw in each calendar month, up to a maximum of £5,000. The Jackpot is then capped at £5,000 until it is won in a weekly draw. 
  2. If more than one player has 5 winning numbers, the Jackpot will be divided equally among the winning players. 
  3. Should no entry forecast all 5 winning numbers, then any player matching 4 numbers will be entered into a draw for a single Consolation Prize of £100
  4. THE DRAW will take place every SUNDAY at 7pm unless otherwise advised.
  5. The entrant named on the ticket must be at least 16 years of age.
  6. All winners will be notified.

So that’s all Jags fans this week and hopefully we will see you at Seafield Park next Saturday in a Breedon Highland League match against high flying Fraserburgh FC – kick off 3pm.

CLIVE’S NEWLETTER – MARCH 2024

2nd: Heavy rain caused a lunchtime call-off for the planned trip to Buckie Thistle

6th: On the pitch it was a difficult evening for the Jags as they conceded ten goals at home to Brora Rangers with only Owen Loveland’s strike in return. The big news off the field was confirmation that North Caledonian League club Loch Ness FC had approached STFC about a potential merger although talks were at an early stage.

7th: Having earlier announced his decision to step down at the end of the season, Robert MacCormack confirmed that his time as manager of the Jags was over. The club would like to wish Robert all the best for the future and thank him for his dedication and hard work in trying to make this a success. If all the work Rob put in had been mirrored on the park, we would have been a top six club this season!

9th: A hard-fought home game against Keith ended in a 2-1 defeat for the Jags, Michael McKenzie scoring the hosts’ goal to equalise just before the hour mark. 

Going very close against Keith

13th: After two call-offs earlier in the season, Wick Academy finally made the trip to Seafield Park and will be glad that they did, a 6-1 victory making their long journey home worthwhile. Owen Loveland scored the Jags goal from the penalty spot.

16th: A long-awaited second win of the season for the Jags and also a second against Deveronvale as second-half goals from Michael McKenzie, Owen Loveland and Ross Logan earned a fine victory in Banff which marked the final game in charge for the home side’s manager Craig Stewart.

18th: Local newspaper reports confirmed the end of exploratory talks between the club and Loch Ness FC of the North Caledonian League over a potential merger.

23rd: Second-bottom Inverness Clachnacuddin were the visitors to Seafield Park and the gap between the two teams was cut to seven points by the final whistle as goals from Ian Ross and Daniel Whitehorn, sandwiched by a penalty for the visitors, made it two wins on the spin for the Jags and put them into double figures for points for the season. Young goalkeeper Ethan Rae continues to attract praise for his displays between the posts.

30th: The Jags couldn’t make it three wins on the spin although a 4-0 defeat against Nairn County at Seafield Park was harsh on the home side.

*****************Remaining Matches This Season***********************

Wednesday 3rd April: (A) versus Buckie Thistle

Saturday 6th April: (A) versus Turriff United

Saturday 13th April: (H) versus Fraserburgh

Wednesday 17th April: (H) versus Buckie Thistle

Saturday 20th April: (A) versus Fraserburgh

As the season begins drawing to a close, a big thank-you once again to everyone who helped the club by sponsoring a pitch-side advertising board.

Montage of the current crop of pitch side advertising boards

STRATHSPEY THISTLE F.C. APPEARANCES SEASON 2023-2024

(up until the 31st March 2024) Records kept by Club Historian – Rob Clark

Players Name              (Goal scored in brackets)LeagueNOS CupScot CupLeague CupTOTAL
James Kendall (GK) 1 S2   01 /02
 Jack Gilliland12 S11  1S1S 12/13
 Caelan Mutch17 / S11 1S 1S 1 1S18//14
 James McShane19 /S3 1223/S03
 Taylor Sutherland17 / S9   17/09
 Jack Davison (9)28 S1 132/01
 Jack MacKay (1)25 S3 1229/S03
 Michael McKenzie (8)24 S1 1 128/01
Ross Logan (3)28/ S2S1
  230/03
Iain Ross (2)12 S11S1  14/12
 Owen Loveland (5)17 S10 1 S219/12
 William UrquhartS 3   S00/04
 Joe Cuthbert7 S14 S1S108/16
 Alan Kerr24 / S528/05
 Seamus McConaghyS10 1  S201/12
 Ben Bremner (GK)S1   00/01
 Callum Ligertwood (GK) 3 S4  S1 104/05
 Owen Paterson (2)27 131
Robbie Flett (GK)01/S5   01/05
 Steve Martin (GK)9 / S2 11 / 02
 Cairn Giles1 S3  1S 01/04
 Liam Grant3 S7 106/07
Ruaridhri Nicol (GK)5 S21  06/02
Daniel Whitehorn (1)7 S5S11109/06
James McLarenS1   00/01
 Kane Davies (1)10 S8  1 11/08
 Jordan Shaw S2   00/02
Liam Shewan (2)7


07
Gullermo Perez LopezS2


00/02
Eathan Rae (GK)10 / S2


10/02
Ewan Neil12


12
Zef UbychS1


00/01
John McLeod01/S2


01/02
Chris GrahamS1


00/01
Scott MacDonaldS3


00/03
Juna Manuel CardonaS1


00/01
Lerlah HayS1


00/01
Kit Fletcher (GK)S1


00/01

GAME OFF

Unfortunately tonight’s game against Buckie Thistle at Victoria Park in Buckie has had to be postponed. The heavy rain over the past couple of days has resulted in a waterlogged pitch.

VICTORIA (part two)

AWAY GAME v BUCKIE THISTLE FC
BREEDON HIGHLAND LEAGUE
VICTORIA PARK, BUCKIE AB56 1BJ
WEDNESDAY 3 APRIL 2024 – KO 8pm

So this Wednesday night under the floodlights of Victoria Park we face our first encounter with Buckie Thistle this season. We were to meet in Grantown in October but advice from the Scottish Government regarding inclement weather postponed that fixture and water problems at Viccy Park last month postponed our meeting there – so this is Buckie’s home match and our home date still has to finalised.

Victoria Park, Buckie

Buckie have had a marvellous season so far- last Wednesday’s win against Brechin put them very much back in contention in the title race but a draw on Saturday against Deveronvale, who incidentally we beat a couple of weeks ago may have dented their aspirations so we can expect a very motivated Buckie – although they may be beginning to feel the effects of playing so many games over the past few weeks…… In their ranks are two regulars from the Strathspey area, defender Sam Morrison and forward Josh Peters who will both no doubt do us no favours whatsoever…and rightly so!

SATURDAY’S GAME v NAIRN COUNTY
Our game on Saturday against Nairn County was severely affected by a colossal rain and hale storm which started about thirty minutes before kick off and continued throughout the first half…..the second half was a calm spring afternoon with blue sky…..and a big thank you to all spectators who braved the weather….although we were all duped by the beautiful sunny morning we had in Grantown!!!!
Nairn managed the conditions better and were well worthy of their 3-0 lead by half time, but as is the case yet again with the Jags this season, they more or less dominated much of the second half and had four really excellent scoring chances, none of which were converted unfortunately and a very good penalty shout, before Nairn scored again in the dying minutes of the game.

No smiles this week as the pitch fixers will have their work cut out in their task.

Sadly, the weather conditions turned most of the pitch into a quagmire and with that, the obvious damage to the playing surface. With ten days to our next home match we’re hoping that the weather will now be kind and help the pitchfixers in their task of getting the surface back to the condition it was before.

That’s it sports fans- be back on Friday with the weekend preview….

THIRD TIME LUCKY

HOME GAME v NAIRN COUNTY FC
BREEDON HIGHLAND LEAGUE
SEAFIELD PARK, GRANTOWN-ON-SPEY, PH26 3HY
SATURDAY 30 MARCH 2024 – KO 3pm

Another home game and for this one we welcome, from twenty-two miles down the A939, players, officials and fans of Nairn County FC.
We last met at Station Park, Nairn way back on a sunny day in September, with if I recall correctly, a very good and encouraging first half performance by the Jags, rather let down by a weak second half – a habit we seemed to have incorporated into most of the season so far, unfortunately. Although we did score a decent goal late on, it was by then far too late, and Nairn ran out winners 4 – 1.

A sunny day in Nairn.

Since then Nairn have had generally a very good season and currently sit in eighth position and competing for a top six place. Player manager Steven MacKay will be hoping for a return to winning ways after last week’s goalless draw at Forres. 
But, after the last couple of weeks the Jags can feel a bit more confident and we would hope that caretaker manager Mike and the boys will put in another excellent performance and perhaps make it three games in a row without loss.
If any of the Nairn travelling support want to familiarise themselves with what’s on in Grantown – click here for more information.

There will still be car parking available in the adjacent Golf Club car park but this will be the last game for a while as the golf club’s season opening match takes place the following Saturday ( April 6 ).

LAST SATURDAY v CLACHNACUDDIN

The Jags line-up against Clach

The Jags won again last Saturday in a hard fought match against Clachnacuddin at Seafield Park to bring our total of league points into double figures, although we still unfortunately sit at the bottom of the table. 
A great pass through the right side of the Clach defence, in the thirty-sixth minute by captain James McShane, sent Iain Ross through on goal evading a couple of tackles then scoring what was an excellent goal, chipping the onrushing ‘keeper. It remained that way until Clach were awarded a penalty mid-way through the second half which Connor Bunce converted. Ten minutes from time Daniel Whitehorn collected the ball about twenty yards out, spun and shot into the bottom left corner of the net putting us 2-1 ahead. The defence marshalled again by young Ethan Rae, with another excellent performance in goal, then held out comfortably to enable the Jags to get full points for the second game in a row.

Saturday’s goal scorers, Ian Ross and Daniel Whitehorn.

Assisting caretaker manager Mike Rae was Charlie Brown who told the local press that he had never seen the faces around Seafield Park looking so happy…..and he was full of praise again for the work rate, effort and commitment of all the Jags players, and especially pleased for Iain Ross, who last week had travelled from working on Saturday morning in Braemar to Banff in time for for last week’s Deveronvale game, and Daniel Whitehorn, who because of work has not been able to play very regularly but had put in a massive shift on Saturday and was out on his feet when he was substituted soon after scoring – in fact Charlie thought that’s why Daniel shot as he was too tired to run any more with the ball!!! 

Speaking of smiles on faces everyone concerned with the Jags would like to thank all those who turned out to view the game – there was a great atmosphere and it was great to see a lot of local faces supporting the Jags, who hopefully enjoyed the game and by doing so will be back for this Saturday’s match against Nairn, which is winnable.

NEXT MATCH
Just a wee reminder that our next two matches are away from home – on Wednesday we travel to Buckie and on Saturday we visit Turriff, which means our next home game is on April 13 against Fraserburgh…….and with home and aways against both Buckie and the Broch too, not an easy finish to the season!!  

LOTTERY

As ever we conclude this week’s meanderings offering you a jackpot win of £5200 on our online fundraising lottery – click here if you want to play…

LOTTERY CH-CH-CHANGES

As intimated a couple of weeks ago after the current jackpot, has been won therefore completing that game there will be couple of changes.

There will still be a weekly prize of £100 for a consolation winner if their entry matches four of the five numbers drawn, however instead of a weekly increase in the jackpot of £100, this will now be increased monthly. 

The game is to forecast 5 winning numbers, which are drawn at random, from 1-20. The 5 numbers chosen are to be marked by a cross (X).

  1. The Jackpot prize starts at £1,000 and the game continues until it is won and starts afresh. As applicable, the Jackpot increases by £100 immediately after the first draw in each calendar month, up to a maximum of £5,000. The Jackpot is then capped at £5,000 until it is won in a weekly draw. 
  2. If more than one player has 5 winning numbers, the Jackpot will be divided equally among the winning players. 
  3. Should no entry forecast all 5 winning numbers, then any player matching 4 numbers will be entered into a draw for a single Consolation Prize of £100
  4. THE DRAW will take place every SUNDAY at 7pm unless otherwise advised.
  5. The entrant named on the ticket must be at least 16 years of age.
  6. All winners will be notified.

PARTY FEARS TWO

HOME GAME v CLACHNACUDDIN FC
BREEDON HIGHLAND LEAGUE
SEAFIELD PARK, GRANTOWN-ON-SPEY, PH26 3HY
SATURDAY 23 MARCH 2024 – KO 3 pm

This Saturday we host Clachnacuddin FC in a 3pm kick off Breedon Highland League match at Seafield Park.

 

In a week which has been quite turbulent for both teams off the park it’ll be good to get back on the park for a good game o’ fitba.
Clachnacuddin club stalwarts chairman Alex Chisholm, and directors Scott Dowling and Chris Forbes resigned after many years of service and we wish them well in their futures away from the hustle and bustle of running a Highland League football club – we will be sorry not to welcome them in an official capacity on Saturday.

This is the return game of what was an eight goal thriller at Grant Street Park back in November – a game we should have won as we were winning by three goals to nil at half time. I don’t know what the chats were but a different Clach emerged from the dressing room for the second half and fought their way back to level, with what was effectively the last kick of the game making the final score 4 – 4.
As you can imagine the neutrals and the Clach supporters enjoyed the game far more than the Jags fans so hopefully on Saturday we can repeat our start and manage game second half so we can add another three points to the three we won last week.

We wish Mike and the boys all the best in what has the makings of a cracking match and hope we can make it two wins in a row.

If any of the Clach supporters would like a refresher on what is available in Grantown please click here.


This will be the last Saturday that we will be able to utilise the neighbouring Golf club’s car park before their season starts so please do so if there is no parking available at the Burnfield Car Park approx 200 m from the ground.
Strathspey Thistle would like to thank Grantown-on-Spey Golf Club for their help with parking over the winter months.


LAST SATURDAY’S GAME v DEVERONVALE IN BANFF

The winning Jags squad from Saturday’s game.

At last we secured three points after an excellent performance winning 3 – 0 against Deveronvale at Princess Royal Park in Banff.
After our only league win, so far this season, strangely enough against Deveronvale at Seafield Park in November there was perhaps a mindset that perhaps we could get something from the game.
Acting manager Mike Rae and his assistant on Saturday, ex-Jags boss Charlie Brown, were delighted with the team’s efforts and well deserved their win.

Scorers Mike McKenzie, Owen Loveland, Ross Logan.

After we missed a penalty in the fifty-fourth minute, Mike McKenzie scored three minutes later. Owen Loveland doubled our lead in the sixty-second minute and Ross Logan sealed the win in the eighty-ninth. As you can imagine it was all smiles and happiness after the game and hopefully more of the same this Saturday.


PROPOSED MERGER WITH LOCH NESS FC
Various talks had taken place over the past couple of weeks regarding a possible merger with North Caledonian League team Loch Ness FC but after another committee meeting on Monday night both parties decided against the idea. 


LOTTERY
So, the £5000 jackpot wasn’t won last Sunday so this week  we are offering you a jackpot win of £5100 on our online fundraising lottery – click here if you want to play…

LOTTERY CH-CH-CHANGES
After the current jackpot has been won therefore completing that game there will be couple of changes.
There will still be a weekly prize of £100 for a consolation winner if their entry matches four of the five numbers drawn, however instead of a weekly increase in the jackpot of £100, this will now be increased monthly. 
The game is to forecast 5 winning numbers, which are drawn at random, from 1-20. The 5 numbers chosen are to be marked by a cross (X).

  1. The Jackpot prize starts at £1,000 and the game continues until it is won and starts afresh. As applicable, the Jackpot increases by £100 immediately after the first draw in each calendar month, up to a maximum of £5,000. The Jackpot is then capped at £5,000 until it is won in a weekly draw. 
  2. If more than one player has 5 winning numbers, the Jackpot will be divided equally among the winning players. 
  3. Should no entry forecast all 5 winning numbers, then any player matching 4 numbers will be entered into a draw for a single Consolation Prize of £100
  4. THE DRAW will take place every SUNDAY at 7pm unless otherwise advised.
  5. The entrant named on the ticket must be at least 16 years of age.
  6. All winners will be notified.

So that’s all sports fans, hopefully, we will see you at Seafield Park next Saturday in a Breedon Highland League match against Nairn County FC kick off 3pm.

CAN-UTILITY AND THE COASTLINERS

AWAY GAME v DEVERONVALE FC
BREEDON HIGHLAND LEAGUE
PRINCESS ROYAL PARK, BANFF AB45 1AZ
SATURDAY 16 MARCH 2024 – KO 3pm

Firstly we can’t go further without letting you participate in this weeks fundraising lottery especially as the jackpot has reached a milestone amount – £5000. 
Join the players in celebrating this…..

The boys celebrating the fundraising jackpot reaching £5000

Paper tickets for the draw for this week and every other week are available in the following Grantown businesses…..The Wee Shop, Grantown Diner, Ashers Bakery, Claymore Bar, the Ben Mhor Hotel and the Legion in The Square. If you can’t get to these establishments you can go online CLICK HERE and play along… over-sixteens only I’m afraid!


THIS WEEK AT THE COAST

Stephen Kelly scoring against Deveronvale at Seafield Park in August 2022.

So it’s a return to the coast and to the Princess Royal Park in Banff and our return meeting this season with Deveronvale FC.
As it was our only win of the season so far, I would imagine The Vale will be out to reverse that and by doing so keep all three points in Banff.
Although only two places above us in the league sitting in sixteenth place, Deveronvale have accumulated nineteen points by having won four games and drawing seven and as both teams try to recover from heavy defeats this week a hard fought match is very much in store and we wish Mike Rae and his boys all the best. 

WEDNESDAY NIGHT’S GAME v WICK ACADEMY


Again, it was a game of two halves – After a very very poor first half performance we found ourselves four-nil down at the break. Again a mention must be made of young Ethan Rae in goal with some excellent saves – one in particular, tipping the ball over the bar from a shot from about twenty yards out in what was definitely goal bound. In the second half we improved and despite Owen Loveland converting a penalty in the sixty-third minute we lost a further two goals making the final score 6-1 to Wick…not a good day at the office!!

Maybe playing three games in seven days took its toll…..

After Saturday’s game we have no game midweek and look forward to next Saturday’s visit to Seafield Park from Clachnacuddin and please remember we will be back to a 3pm kick off.


LOTTERY
As ever we conclude this week’s meanderings offering you a jackpot win of £5000 on our online fundraising lottery – click here if you want to play…

LOTTERY CH-CH-CHANGES
As intimated after the current jackpot, has been won therefore completing that game there will be couple of changes.

There will still be a weekly prize of £100 for a consolation winner if their entry matches four of the five numbers drawn, however instead of a weekly increase in the jackpot of £100, this will now be increased monthly. 

The game is to forecast 5 winning numbers, which are drawn at random, from 1-20. The 5 numbers chosen are to be marked by a cross (X).

  1. The Jackpot prize starts at £1,000 and the game continues until it is won and starts afresh. As applicable, the Jackpot increases by £100 immediately after the first draw in each calendar month, up to a maximum of £5,000. The Jackpot is then capped at £5,000 until it is won in a weekly draw. 
  2. If more than one player has 5 winning numbers, the Jackpot will be divided equally among the winning players. 
  3. Should no entry forecast all 5 winning numbers, then any player matching 4 numbers will be entered into a draw for a single Consolation Prize of £100
  4. THE DRAW will take place every SUNDAY at 7pm unless otherwise advised.
  5. The entrant named on the ticket must be at least 16 years of age.
  6. All winners will be notified.

MIGHTY RE-ARRANGER 2

HOME GAME v WICK ACADEMY FC
BREEDON HIGHLAND LEAGUE
SEAFIELD PARK, GRANTOWN-ON-SPEY, PH26 3HY
WEDNESDAY 13 MARCH 2024 – KO 8pm

Would you believe Wednesday is the fourth anniversary of football being shut down due to the pandemic…13 March 2020!!!

Onto brighter things …..for our third game in a row at home we welcome Wick Academy for what is I think the third time this game has been scheduled – we were meant to meet initially last September but due to a crash on the A9 and the road being closed the team bus could not get through and secondly, the weather put paid to the re-arranged fixture on a very cold Wednesday night in December.
So, third time lucky, and hopefully a win for the Jags!
Our last meeting at the start of February at Harmsworth Park, the predominant feature was the exceptionally strong wind and in the half the wind was for Wick, three goals were scored…..and when the wind for us we managed two ….resulting in a three two win for The Scorries. Hopefully on Wednesday night the wind will be a lot more benign and not influence the game quite so much.

Currently sitting in fourteenth place and on twenty three points Wick Academy have had some very good results over the past month or so, although they did lose 3-1 to Inverurie last Saturday. 
All Jags fans will be hoping the boys put in the same effort and performance as they did in Saturday’s game against Keith FC.

SATURDAY’S GAME v KEITH

Going very close against Keith on Saturday

In a hard fought ninety or so minutes at Seafield Park, Keith finished up 2-1 winners.
They went ahead after twenty minutes, although we did have one glorious chance to level before half-time. 
Mike Mckenzie equalised on fifty-eight minutes finishing off a very good move and the game see-sawed after that until the seventy-fourth minute when a high through ball bounced awkwardly over our defence setting up Keith’s Mikey Taylor to lob the ball over the advancing keeper Ethan Rae. Ethan, on loan to the Jags from Ross County until the end of the season, produced another excellent individual performance.

Michael McKenzie

Probably a draw would have been a fair result but no-one could fault any of the Jags for not giving one hundred per cent.

FOCUSSING ON………

Betty and Davie Love

The Club would like to thank Betty and Davie Love for all their help and dedication over the past twenty years or so, Davie as grass cutter and groundsman and Betty (aided and abetted by Davie) for cleaning the dressing rooms, The Shack and the toilet block making them spick and span for the next home game – as well as turning out every home game to support the Jags.
Thanks again to you both and we look forward to seeing you both at every home game at Seafield Park!!

Jags secretary Clive Wolstenholme, Billy Baxter and Keith chairman Andy Troup

Referee Billy Baxter is retiring at the end of the season after twenty five years service to the game.
The Jags and Keith FC wished to pay tribute to the fact as this was scheduled to be Billy’s last time officiating either club this season.
Keith compiled a double sided list of all the games involving Keith FC over the past twenty-five years officiated by Billy, as well as a bottle from one of Keith’s finest whisky distilleries and The Jags presented him with 30-Year StrathspeyThistle commemorative plaque.

LOTTERY MILESTONE
This week the jackpot has reached £5000 – and our photographer managed to capture the boys celebrating the milestone figure…..

The boys celebrating the fundraising jackpot reaching £5000

Tickets for the draw for this week and every other week are available in the following Grantown businesses…..The Wee Shop, Grantown Diner, Ashers Bakery, Claymore Bar, the Ben Mhor Hotel and the Legion in The Square. If you can’t get to these establishments you can go online CLICK HERE and play along… over-sixteens only I’m afraid!


DATE FOR YOUR DIARY
WEDNESDAY 3 APRIL AWAY MATCH v BUCKIE THISTLE FC

See y’all on Friday….

TIME TO SAY GOODBYE

HOME GAME v KEITH FC
BREEDON HIGHLAND LEAGUE
SEAFIELD PARK, GRANTOWN-ON-SPEY, PH26 3HY
SATURDAY 9 MARCH 2024 – KO 2pm

ROBERT MACCORMACK

Robert MacCormack

On Thursday manager Rob MacCormack decided that he wanted to resign from his post with immediate effect. He had intimated to the committee that he would be leaving at the end of the season but had reconsidered and thought it would be more beneficial to both himself and the Club if he did not wait until the season’s end.

Again, we as a Club would like to reiterate what we said last week and wish Robert all the best for the future and thank him for his dedication and hard work in trying to make this a success, and if all the work Rob put in had been mirrored on the park we would have been a top six club no problem!
Assistant manager Mike Rae will take the reigns for the foreseeable future.

And with no real relevance to the above the eagle eyed readers would probably have seen a report, in the on-line edition of The Press & Journal, on Thursday morning accompanying Thursday’s story, on the Strathy on-line page, with regards to talks between Loch Ness FC and ourselves about a possible merger – the STFC Committee will be meeting early next week to further discuss the matter. 


So back onto the park and this Saturday we welcome Keith FC to Seafield Park. Having been beaten by three goals to one back in November at Kynoch Park, we obviously want to balance the points – this time we win all three!
Keith although sitting in fifteenth place have have had a pretty good February results wise, picking up nine points, so it’ll not be easy but hopefully the boys will want to restore some pride after Wednesday night.

In the last of our winter floodlight saving 2pm kick offs, we look forward to welcoming the Keith fans and if any want a recap in the town’s facilities click here.

Wednesday Night v Brora Rangers

As has been the case all season we play only one half! This was again prevalent in our midweek performance at home to Brora Rangers.
After a well fought first half performance but with the usual conceded early and late goal, we went in at half time two nil down and then proceeded to concede eight more in the second half…..the only highlight being an excellent headed goal by the Jags’ Owen Loveland.

Final Score Thistle  1 – Brora 10.


STEWART FULTON
Preceeding the game on Wednesday night was a minute’s silence in memory of Stewart Fulton who died last week.

Stewart Fulton


Stewart, from Edinburgh, came to prominence in the Planning Office at the Scottish Office and was CEO of the Cairngorm Partnership here in Grantown, the forerunner of the Cairngorms National Park. 
Stewart was instrumental in his help in gaining Highland League status for Strathspey Thistle and was a regular visitor, along with his good friend Stuart Black to Seafield Park, before returning to Edinburgh three years ago. 

Strathspey Thistle Football Club send our condolences to Stewart’s family and friends. 

LOTTERY
As ever we conclude this week’s meanderings offering you a jackpot win of £4900 on our online fundraising lottery – click here if you want to play…

LOTTERY CH-CH-CHANGES
As intimated a few weeks ago, after the current jackpot has been won which therefore completes that game there will be couple of changes.

There will still be a weekly prize of £100 for a consolation winner if their entry matches four of the five numbers drawn, however instead of a weekly increase in the jackpot of £100, this will now be increased monthly. 

The game is to forecast 5 winning numbers, which are drawn at random, from 1-20. The 5 numbers chosen are to be marked by a cross (X).

  1. The Jackpot prize starts at £1,000 and the game continues until it is won and starts afresh. As applicable, the Jackpot increases by £100 immediately after the first draw in each calendar month, up to a maximum of £5,000. The Jackpot is then capped at £5,000 until it is won in a weekly draw. 
  2. If more than one player has 5 winning numbers, the Jackpot will be divided equally among the winning players. 
  3. Should no entry forecast all 5 winning numbers, then any player matching 4 numbers will be entered into a draw for a single Consolation Prize of £100
  4. THE DRAW will take place every SUNDAY at 7pm unless otherwise advised.
  5. The entrant named on the ticket must be at least 16 years of age.
  6. All winners will be notified.

So that’s all from what’s been a hectic week hopefully we will see you at Seafield Park on Wednesday night when we host Wick Academy FC.