IT WAS a case of two performances at the opposite ends of the quality scale in each half at Keith last night in the eyes of manager Ronnie Sharp as Nairn County battled back from two goals down at the interval to earn a point.
Nairn found themselves two goals behind with a little over quarter-of-an-hour played in a poor first half showing. But pushing for a way back into the game following the turnaround, the final 15 minutes of the game belonged to County with Jordan MacRae striking to reduce the arrears before Jack Maclean headed home the equaliser.
Sharp said: “I thought the second half performance was really good – it was as good as the first was bad. We lacked energy and commitment in the first half. In the second, I cannot fault it because we were committed all over the park and were quick to try to win the ball back when we lost possession. We even had chances to win the game after getting it back to 2-2 but if you are 2-0 down at half time you will probably take a point.”
He added: “We have been down before and battled back but the first half performances over the last few games have been the problem. Most of the times we have been excellent in the second half of games though. We were really good in the second half against Rothes on Saturday and then again tonight but we need to sort out going behind in games. We seem to be chasing every single game and that is the major problem we have.
“I thought we dominated the second half. Our goalkeeper had no saves to make and we had two or three major chances as well as the two goals we scored with cleared off the line and we hit the post too, so the second half was good.”
MacRae drilled home with on 13 minutes remaining to give County hope and the come back was completed by Maclean’s header 10 minutes later.
“Jordan is playing with a lot of confidence,” stated Sharp. “That is him on 20 goals for the season and I cannot fault his contribution. The second one was a good header from Jack Maclean. He was in the position to get on the end of the cross from wing back, which we needed. We changed the system about a bit during the first half and put Jack into wing back to give us energy and he did really well.”
Ryan MacBean from the under-20s squad came off the bench to make his debut with the 18-year-old striker featuring for the final 10 minutes.
“It is excellent for him,” Sharp said. “That is what we use the under-20s squad for. These boys have to come through that and we will see if they are good enough for the first team. I thought his touches and energy levels were good. He had a wee chance near the end but could not quite control the ball.
“It was good for him to get on and it is good for the rest of the under-20s squad to see that they will get a chance if they keep progressing.”