Written by Nairn County FC August 18th 2023


Goalscorers: Michael Finnis (28), Alan Pollock (84)

Nairn County went into their meeting with Rothes looking for their opening league win of the season at Station Park.  But it was the visitors who came out on top to secure the points in what was a towsy affair with a goal in each half from Michael Finnis and Alan Pollock.

The home side were looking to follow up on their win over Wick Academy in the preliminary round in the GPH Highland League Cup last weekend.  The home support were in confident mood as the match kicked off on a sun kissed Station Park, but their heroes failed to spark throughout, and to cap a disappointing evening for the wee county, Manager Steven Mackay was red-carded and sent to the stand for remarks made to the referee.

Both teams opened brightly with the home side making two changes to the side that had defeated Wick days earlier, with Skipper Fraser Dingwall and Ben Kelly replacing duo Tyler Eadie and Sam Gordon.

Conor Gethins went close early on testing keeper Sean McCarthy with a snap shot at his near post that the keeper held confidently.

The visitors responded in 25 minutes when Alan Mackenzie whipped over a cross, and Gary Kerr’s header was blocked by Ross Tokely to the relief of the home support.

The opener duly arrived after 28 minutes, when Michael Finnis powered above the home rearguard to bullet home a fine header from a corner for the opener.  On the stroke of half-time the same player went close to adding a second for the Speysiders from another corner.

The home side began the second period on the offensive, with Scott Davidson and Tyler Eadie replacing Aaron Nicolson and Ben Kelly respectively.

However, on the hour came controversy, when Tyler Eadie went down in the penalty area following what looked like a late challenge from Bruce Milne, but Match Referee Gordon Seago waved away the home side appeals.

Amid the controversy, County Boss Steven Mackay was subsequently red-carded and sent to the stand for remarks made.  With six minutes remaining the visitors made the points safe.  Gary Kerr made the running and his pass opened up the defence for Alan Pollock to fire home the second at the far post.

Two minutes from time, the visitors almost added a third, and only a superb save from Dylan Maclean denied Greg Morrison at his near post.

Overall, a disappointing night for the home side, who are still in search of their opening league win of the season. Next up they travel to Brechin City as that search goes on.

NAIRN COUNTY:  Dylan Maclean: Andrew Macleod (Sam Gordon 80), Kenny Mackenzie, Ross Tokely, Fraser Dingwall (C): Wayne MacKintosh (Angus Dey 75), Ben Kelly (Tyler Eadie 46), Alasdair Gillies, Callum Maclean (Jamie Carnihan 27), Conor Gethins, Aaron Nicolson (Scott Davidson 46)     Subs unused:  Lewis Munro, Owen MacDonald, Stephen Rennie

ROTHES:   McCarthy: Haspell, McDade, Finnis, Milne, Johnstone, Pollock, Kerr, Morrison, A.Mackenzie Subs:  Thomson, Proudfoot, McConnachie, Trialist, Williamson, Shepherd, Cruickshank

Match Referee:  Gordon Seago


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