Written by Nairn County FC July 19th 2017

NAIRN County make the short trip over the railway line to the Showfield as they take on Nairn St Ninian in their latest pre-season warm-up fixture. The Saints have shown up well against Highland League opposition in pre-season so far, with only a last-minute goal earning Clachnacuddin a 2-1 win at the Showfield and a late Strathspey Thistle strike allowing them to scramble to a 2-2 draw at the same venue. County are counting the cost of another hard-working shift at Forfar Athletic and manager Ronnie Sharp is set to make wholesale changes to freshen up his starting line-up for this one with a a number of his top players set to be left out having put a tremendous amount of effort into the club's three pre-season friendlies against Scottish Professional Football League opposition. It is the first of a junior double-header for Nairn with this match closely followed by a trip to New Elgin less than 48 hours later as Sharp looks to finalise his preparations for the start of the new Highland League season the following Saturday. Live matchday coverage will be available from the Showfield on facebook.com/nairncountyfc and @NairnCounty on Twitter with team lines before kick-off, updates on all of the incidents of note as the match progresses, a report after the final whistle and the views of manager Ronnie Sharp the following day. A preview of the match is below: Date: Thursday July 20th 2017 Competition: Pre-season friendly Kick-off: 1930 Opponents: Nairn St Ninian Manager: Mike Hendry Venue: Showfield, Nairn Previous meeting: n/a Last time out: n/a League position: n/a Form guides: n/a Team news: Ronnie Sharp will take the opportunity to rotate his squad around for this one, with a number of key players set to be rested having started all pre-season fixtures to date. The likes of Callum Maclean, Adam Porritt, Kenny McKenzie, Adam Naismith Dylan Maclean and Jordan Macrae could all be kept in cold storage for the trip to the Showfield with another friendly match just two days later, a busy rota of games already behind them and the start of the new Highland League campaign looming large on the horizon. Gary Kerr has had the all-clear to return to light training following knee surgery although this match will come too soon for last season's top scorer but Ross Naismith is back in contention having missed Saturday's trip to Forfar through work commitments. A knee injury rules Gregg Main out while last year's goal hero in this tie, Calum Riddell is also unavailable. Jason Morganti and Stephen Mackenzie miss out again due to work commitments. One to watch: Simon Hill. The pacey attacker provides skill and trickery in the wide areas for Saints and County will have their work cut out to keep the former Strathspey Thistle forward quiet in this one. A key player for manager Mike Hendry last season, the St Ninian boss will be looking to get the best out of the forward again this campaign as they look to push on from their third-place finish last year with a tilt a promotion to the SuperLeague. Match officials: Referee Molly Alexander. Weather forecast: Light cloud 14 degrees 5 mph wind. Admission prices: Free Graeme Macleod

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