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Rovers secure place in Stafford Cup final with victory at Helmsdale


By Niall Harkiss

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Helmsdale United and Golspie Stafford in action when last the teams met in 2019. Photo: Niall Harkiss
Helmsdale United and Golspie Stafford in action when last the teams met in 2019. Photo: Niall Harkiss

Teams in the North West Sutherland amateurs will get their league campaign under way on Saturday after a two year break from competition.

The season begins with an east Sutherland derby as Helmsdale and Golspie lock horns at Couper Park, while Lochinver will welcome returning Dornoch, who play their first league game since 2018.

New boys Lochbroom, who reformed this year after an eight year abeyance, will travel to meet Lairg, while Inver play host to Melvich for a first time meeting between the teams.

Helmsdale United and Lairg Rovers took part in the only game of the weekend at Couper Park last Saturday, with the latter securing a place in the Stafford Cup Final thanks to a 3–2 win.

The game was closely contested throughout. Adam Mackay opened the scoring for Rovers with a header midway through the first half, but a Billy Cairns goal brought the hosts back into it before the break.

Michael Newlands netted soon after the restart to restore Lairg's lead but once again Helmsdale were able to bring themselves back into it, this time through Kevin Cairns.

With a quarter hour left, Miller Mackay grabbed the all important winner to send Lairg into the final of the competition.

The first round match between Melvich and Golspie Stafford was postponed again due to Golspie holding a golf day.

Fixtures for Saturday May 7 in the North West Sutherland amateur league:

  • Helmsdale United v Golspie Stafford (3pm)
  • Inver v Melvich (3pm)
  • Lairg Rovers v Lochbroom (4pm)
  • Lochinver v Dornoch (4pm)

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