Weekend Preview January 15th

Caley Clubs Back in Action By Jack Nixon After a limited fixture schedule last week, Caley clubs look to be back in action in force; this despite being given once again the option of whether to play or not. Only two games went ahead last week, whereas their appears to be a near full programme this weekend to please supporters throughout Northern Caledonian area. Orkney will be back in Fife on Caley Division 1 business, bidding to put aside the disappointment of losing out to Dunfermline who deposed the islanders at the head of affairs in a fiercely contested game. A game with bottom side Glenrothes should present Garry Coltherd’s side with the opportunity of picking up five points. Coltherd certainly thinks so and said:”We didn’t play particularly well last week, but still managed to pick up a losing bonus point, and have two games in hand on Dunfermline. We will be aiming to pick up maximum points, that’s for sure.” Dunfermline have a much tougher assignment at home to Aberdeen Wanderers who although well off the title pace, on their day are quite capable of shocking the McKane Park side, even on their own patch. The biggest disappointment of the day is the postponement of the Caithness versus Ellon clash in Thurso due to Covid issues in the Ellon camp. The two sides are the only ones who could possibly overhaul the two leaders, but in my book will be strong contenders for promotion next season, having spent much of this campaign blooding young players in preparation for the 2022/23 season. In the meantime Caithness head coach Ewan Boyd is convinced Orkney will triumph at the end of this season. “They are by far the best team in the league. We ran them close at Millbank but they were the better side and w

ill do well in National League 3. Our turn will hopefully come next season. This time around we have concentrated on developing our young players,” said Boyd. The battle for supremacy in Caley 2 North continues after last week’s epic encounter at Canal Park where 2nd Highland eased past Moray 43 - 35, effectively handing Aberdeenshire a golden opportunity to win promotion. Shire’s ability to hold their nerve will now be severely tested, starting tomorrow when they travel to Invergordon where Ross Sutherland will be in no mood to do Charlie Catto’s charges any favours. The home side are nicely placed in fourth place in this most competitive of leagues and would dearly love to pull off the shock of the day. Moray who are one point off the pace, travel to Rubislaw where they meet 2nd Aberdeen Grammar while 2nd Highland who cannot gain promotion entertain Mackie FP’s who are having the most torrid of seasons, having won only one game. The bet is that the situations will not change over the weekend and and that Catto’s dream of leading Shire to the top flight of Caley rugby will take another step towards reality. In Caley 3 North, 2nd Gordonians look set to take another step in their bid to wrap up the title at Inverurie where third placed Garioch might just fancy their chances of handing the Countesswells side a second defeat of the season but little chance of denying them the title. Kinloss Eagles are home to Huntly in the same division. In Caley 4 North, Turriff the new boys of the league host Aberdeen University Medics and Inverness Craig Dunain are at home to Caithness. At the time of going to press, all these games are scheduled to go ahead but given the current state of play, Covid could yet have some say in the matter. Sent from my iPad

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Jack Nixon Orkney returned to the National Leagues after an absence of three years, easing home 55 - 5 against a workmanlike Aberdeen Wanderers who enjoyed spells of good play but did not see enoug