BREEDON HIGHLAND LEAGUE
NAIRN COUNTY 2 ROTHES 2
SATURDAY 30 JULY 2022
STATION PARK, NAIRN
Goalscorers: Greig (24, 57); Finnis (7), Mackay (59)
Royal British Legion Man of the Match: Andrew Greig
Nairn County followed up their opening day draw with newcomers Banks O’Dee, with a hard fought share of the spoils from their latest encounter at home to Rothes.
The home side lined up making four changes from the side that had gone out of the North of Scotland Cup to Elgin City in midweek.
Out had gone Ciaran Young, Callum Maclean, Rory Williamson and Sam Gordon, with Conor Gethins, Scott Davidson, Cameron Lisle and Liam Shewan all reinstated to the Wee County line-up.
The game opened at a franetic pace with the visitors making an early breakthrough, with the opener after just seven minutes.
Aidan Wilson flighted in a well struck corner and speyside defender Michael Finnis outjumped the home defence to bullet home a powerful header to give his side an early advantage.
The home side responded, and deservedly levelled the match midway through the first period.
Scott Davidson and Andrew Greig combined well at the edge of the speysiders penalty area.
Davidson laid the ball back to the edge of the box for the winger to swivel and fire an 18 yard drive past the helpless Sean McCarthy just inside his near post.
A minute later, a defensive error gave one-time former Nairn player Steven Mackay the opportunity to restore his side’s advantage, and only the quick thinking of Callum Howarth, heading from under his own crossbar, denied the striker.
The home side almost surged in front with twelve minutes of the first period remaining.
Jack Maley was dispossessed by Glenn Main at the edge of his own box, but the midfield man’s right footed effort drifted agonisingly past the far post as the pace of the match intensified in the searing heat.
Back came County, and a powerful run and cross from Man of the Match Andrew Grieg, saw Davidson just fail to get the final touch under pressure from McCarthy, who gathered at full stretch with seven minutes of the first period remaining.
The home side began the second period on the offensive, and seven minutes after the re-start a fine through ball from Scott Davidson released Conor Gethins in the clear, however, Sean McCarthy got down well to block the striker’s final effort.
The home side surged ahead after 57 minutes. Davidson found Greig with a superb diagonal ball, and the winger weaved his way along the byeline, and beat the stranded keeper with a superb right foot effort that found the far corner of the net.
Two minutes later, and against the run of play the visitors were level.
Latest signing Steven Mackay grabbing the equaliser with a neat finish from 12 yards.
With play now swinging from end to end, the home side had a let-off after 64 minutes.
Aidan Wilson burst clear down the left touchline, before bearing down on Nairn keeper Dylan Maclean, who produced a superb save to deny the striker.
The home side continued to drive forward, minutes later, a fine five man move ended with Conor Gethins racing clear, but his powerful drive was pushed round the post by McCarthy. Rothes retaliated and a bullet header from Michael Finnis at the far post went close.
Three minutes later, McCarthy again excelled for the visitors, when he somehow managed to get a hand to a Gethins effort to push the ball round the upright. With the match finely balanced, both teams were pushing for a late winner.
Five minutes from time Nathan Grant denied the Speysiders a late winner when he headed a Wilson effort clear, three yards from goal, with Dylan Maclean grounded. Both teams will be disappointed at having to settle for a share of the points.
Numerous opportunities created throughout, particularly during the second period.
Next weekend we are again at home, to near neighbours Forres Mechanics
NAIRN COUNTY: Dylan Maclean, Cameron Lisle, Kenny Mackenzie, Glenn Main, Calum Howarth (Nathan Grant), Adam Porritt, Andrew Greig, Angus Dey, Conor Gethins, Scott Davidson (Sam Gordon 87), Liam Shewan
Unused Substitutes: Seamus McConaghy, Rory Williamson, Ciaran Young, Kieran Duffty, Will Counsell (gk)
ROTHES: S.McCarthy, McRitchie, Finnis, Johnstone, Milne, Maley, Whyte (J.Thomson) Pollock, Wilson, Mackay, A.MacKenzie,
Unused Substitutes: Neil, C.Thomson, Alexander, I.MacKenzie