RONNIE Sharp will be sweating on the fitness of a number of key players ahead of this weekend’s visit of Clachnacuddin having had to do without a host of first team regulars for last Saturday’s trip to Forres Mechanics.
His understrength side were swatted aside by the Can Cans at Mosset Park last weekend and Sharp will want to bolster his ranks ahead of another tough derby outing with Clachnacuddin holding the Indian Sign over County in recent seasons.
The Lilywhites kick-started their season with a last-gasp winner at home against Lossiemouth and manager Ian Polworth will be looking for that to be the catalyst for his charges to go on a positive run of form having been defeated in their first two league matches and exited the North of Scotland Cup.
Nairn will be after a similar outcome for a similar reason though, having been left disappointed by poor showings in recent 4-1 defeats to Wick Academy and Forres Mechanics, which meant that they failed to build on the impressive 1-0 away victory at Deveronvale at the start of the month. With a home derby again against Forres to come on Wednesday night in the quarter finals of the North of Scotland Cup, the difficult fixtures continue to come thick and fast and a victory in this one would be a huge boost for everyone at Station Park.
If you are unable to make it along to the match to support the team then you can follow live updates from Station Park on the club’s official social media channels. Simply logon to facebook.com/nairncountyfc or follow @NairnCounty on Twitter to receive team line-ups before kick-off, coverage of all the major talking points as the match progresses, a report on the final whistle and reaction from Sharp later in the evening. Meanwhile, a preview is below:
Date: Saturday August 18th 2018
Competition: Scottish Highland Football League
Manager: Ian Polworth
Venue: Station Park, Nairn
Previous meeting: Clachnacuddin 3 Nairn County 0 December 2nd 2017
Last time out: Forres Mechanics 4 Nairn County 1; Clachnacuddin 1 Nairn County 0
League position: Nairn County 15th Clachnacuddin 14th
Form guides: Clachnacuddin LLLW Nairn County LWWLL
Team news: The hosts have a number of players pushing for a return to the squad in this the second of three consecutive local derbies. After being down to the bare bones for last weekend’s visit to Forres Mechanics, Ronnie Sharp will have his fingers crossed that Callum Maclean, Kenny McKenzie, Jack Maclean and Gregg Main are all able to declare themselves fit for this home match against Clachnacuddin, before the return match against the Can Cans in the North of Scotland Cup in midweek. Definitely available for the weekend are Adam Porritt and Tom Maclennan, who are back in the squad again having been on holiday and at a wedding last Saturday respectively. Fraser Dingwall will not be involved though as he serves the second of his two-match suspension.
One to watch: Fraser Robertson. The sought-after midfielder has not let speculation surrounding his future detract from his performances so far this season. He has put the off-field talk behind him to put in a star turn for Ian Polworth’s men in each outing this campaign and has even been entrusted by the Grant Street Park boss to wear the captain’s armband. Capable of driving the Lilywhites on with his drive and energy from midfield, he will look to have his say on derby day as Clach look to continue their recent good run in games against Nairn.
Match officials: Referee Mat Northcroft, Assistants Darren Westmacott and John Black.
Weather forecast: Light cloud 18 degrees 24 mph wind.
Admission prices: Adults £8 Concessions £5 (two children under the age of 14 are admitted for free if they are accompanied by a paying adult).