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Les Fridge’s Nairn County ran out comfortable winners against a Fort William Side who they came up against 2 weeks ago in the Highland League Cup, with the same 4-0 outcome at Station Park in Nairn.

It only took 5 minutes for Nairn to test the Fort William goalkeeper David Osborne, it came from a dangerous cross from Ross Naismith which Osborne palmed onto his crossbar, then denied Robbie Duncanson from the rebound.

The next opportunity for Nairn came 12 minutes into the game when their on form striker Conor Gethins found himself just inside the box and hit a magnificent shot which was going into the bottom left corner but the strike was equally matched by another brilliant stop by David Osborne who managed to parry the shot away to his right hand side.

Six Minutes later Nairn finally broke the deadlock after Les Fridge was getting frustrated and calling for his team to “sharpen up”. The goal came when a strike from Conor Gethins just outside the box which was saved but not held by Fort William’s David Osborne and Adam Naismith was there to slot it home to make it 1-0.

Fort William’s best opportunity of the match came in the 22nd minute with a brilliant run by James Whyte who took it past the Nairn defenders and his strike from outside the box looked like it was dipping over Nairn’s Callum Antell but he pulled off a brilliant save which saw him spring up into the air to tip it over the bar for a corner.  

On 39 minutes Nairn’s Kyle Wilkie produced some brilliant skill and determination to get past Fort William’s defence, but unfortunately for Nairn supporters who thought he deserved the goal after his brilliant run, the shot lacked power and landed straight into the arms of David Osborne.

Overall it was a one sided half and Fort manager Calum Maclean was hoping for a response in the second half.

It only took Nairn 7 minutes to double their advantage from the penalty spot after Andrew Hardwick who took down Gethins in the area. Hardwick was cautioned and there were some debates over whether it was a penalty but it was slotted away with a composed finish to the bottom left hand corner from Gethins to make it 2-0.

62 minutes in and a run down the right hand side from Nairn’s Alan Pollock ended with him whipping in a cross to the far post to find the head of Conor Gethins who headed it to the bottom left corner, but was denied by David Osborne who was quick to react to get down and save it to keep the score at 2-0.

Seven minutes later Nairn got their 3rd goal from Ross Naismith. It looked impossible to score as Naismith attacked the right hand side and cut into the box, but he somehow got it over Osborne and into the far corner to make it 3-0.

After 75 minutes Nairn got their 4th goal from sub John Cameron, who was only on the park for two minutes before he took his first touch just inside the box and fired it home into the bottom left hand corner.

On 81 minutes Nairn had a chance to make it five, Duncanson pulled the ball back to Conor Gethins just outside the box and he produced a wonderful strike, but unfortunately it smacked off the post.

Overall the whole game was quite one-sided, Fort William did put up a fight but weren’t good enough on the day.

Reporter: Kyran Dyer

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Keith 2 : 1 Wick Academy
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Lossiemouth 1 : 6 Cove Rangers
Formartine United 0 : 0 Buckie Thistle
Strathspey Thistle 0 : 3 Deveronvale
Fort William 1 : 5 Brora Rangers

Press and Journal Highland League 2016-17

Rank Teams Played GD Points
1 Buckie Thistle 34 94 82
2 Cove Rangers 34 79 82
3 Brora Rangers 34 80 81
4 Formartine United 34 35 73
5 Fraserburgh 34 29 63
6 Forres Mechanics 34 21 58
7 Turriff United 34 14 58
8 Wick Academy 34 23 53
9 Inverurie Locos 34 18 50
10 Keith 34 -14 47
11 Clachnacuddin 34 -24 41
12 Lossiemouth 34 -18 38
13 Nairn County 34 -17 34
14 Huntly 34 -43 34
15 Deveronvale 34 -24 30
16 Rothes 34 -69 26
17 Fort William 34 -92 11
18 Strathspey Thistle 34 -92 9

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