Skye and Lochalsh Amateur League
Gairloch/Aultbea United 7 Portree 2 (att 19)
I didn't get to Aultbea before the club joined forces with Wester Ross rivals Gairloch. Since the merger most games have been played in Gairloch, but currently there's no changing rooms there so the club have relocated, temporarily I assume, 13 miles north.
It meant an even longer trek for Portree, who faced a 260 mile round trip on slow Highland roads to fulfill the fixture. That's some commitment for amateur football, and I wasn't too surprised that the game kicked off a little late and Portree arrived with just 11 players and no subs.
That may have cost them the game. They scored first and looked marginally the better side in a first half that ended 1-1.
But just as the half time whistle was about to go a Portree player suffered a nasty-looking injury. He was unable to continue and so his team mates were a man down for the second half.
They battled well, but collapsed near the end as GA United (as the hosts are usually known) racked up goals, including two penalties. Portree did get one back, but by then they were already well beaten. The five goal margin was harsh on the visitors.
The football pitch at Aultbea is MacLennan Park, and while there's no facilities other than car parking at both ends it's a lovely place to watch football, with a view across to the nearby Isle of Ewe. Players change in the village hall and from there it's a short walk to the pitch.