In Dodds we Trust
A wee break from the Championship this weekend as we face high scoring Buckie Thistle in the SPL Trust Trophy. That's the Challenge Cup to you and me of which we are the joint holders with Raith Rovers when Tunnocks Caramel Wafers were the sponsors. The game kicks off at 3:00pm on Saturday at the Caledonian Stadium, and if you can't make it to the ground, then live streaming is available from ICTV at a mere £10.
Games against Buckie Thistle are like buses. None for years then two come along within months of each other. We do like a cup game against green and white hooped teams. We have a decent record against them right up to Scottish Cup semi-finals. This time it's Buckie Thistle, a team we put out of the Scottish Cup last season with a very late Daniel Mackay goal in a 3-2 win at the fishing town. It was scarcely deserved as Buckie were equal to a mostly youthful Inverness side, and despite going behind to a James Keatings goal after 35 seconds they fought back when Jack Murray deservedly headed Buckie level fifteen minutes in. A shot from distance by Sean Welsh restored the visitors advantage but a final flurry of activity saw Callum Murray equalise only for Dan to score two minutes later. Credit to Buckie for making this difficult for the youngishl Inverness side and a trip to Dingwall beckoned and ultimately an away tie at Paisley where we bowed out of the cup to a late St Mirren goal.
Anyway, to the job in hand, a testing tie against a high scoring Buckie Thistle who sit second in the Highland League behind the Broch. Buckie have scored an incredible 31 goals in just seven games. A thumping 10-0 win over Keith the highlight. To get to this round, Buckie disposed of Brechin City at the Hedge by 3-1 with Sam Morrison, Sam Urquhart and Callum Murray scoring the goals in an impressive performance. Unfortunately Sam Morrison was red carded late in the game and will miss this tie. Buckie have already drawn with leaders Fraserburgh and the only blemish was a 2-0 reverse against Rothes. They warmed up for this game by trouncing Formartine United 5-1 away from home at North Lodge Park.
Inverness are themselves in fine form in the Championship, winning their opening four fixtures on the trot, all by 1-0. An excellent well drilled performance at Rugby Park saw the Highlanders come away with all three points to put Inverness on top of the table on their own with twelve points from four games after Michael Gardyne scored his first goal for the club, a thumping shot from twelve yards palmed into the roof of the net by the keeper. Boom!
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It looks like some fringe players will be involved in this one with Barry Wilson seeing this as an ideal opportunity to give the likes of Cameron Harper and Billy Mckay some game time whilst resting up some of the guys that have put us on top of the Championship after four games. Michael Gardyne picked up an injury in training and will Maybe Cammie Mackay will get a run out between the sticks as well. However, there's a fine balance between resting players and still remaining competitive. Buckie are not to be underestimated.