Hebridean Celtic Festival Inter-Island Shinty Cup 2018
Lewis V Uist
Bayhead, 2pm, Saturday 21 July 2018
That time of year again! The big derby of the year with Uist is Saturday 21 July, 2PM at Bayhead. Big thanks as always to Caroline MacLennan and the whole Hebridean Celtic Festival team for their hospitality and support of this fixture which has been crucial to the development of shinty in the Western Isles over the last decade. There have been some classic games over the years, ever since the fixture first started in 2007. This will be the 12th running of this now iconic event.
The fixture was started in 2007 but with Uist unavailable the game was played between Camanachd Leodhais and a Hebcelt Allstars team which had some guests over for the festival cameo. This was played at the old Acres Pitch which is now a car park. Lewis won 3-0. There are no photos in evidence!
The 2008 version was played over two legs, with the first game held in North Uist at Easter. Lewis won that game 4-2, but the game at Smith Avenue on the Saturday of the Festival was a close 2-2 draw, with Lewis grabbing the draw in he final seconds to secure the cup.
In 2009, there was a cloud over proceedings with the recent death of Craig Morrison. On a rainy day which seemed to reflect the mood, in that sense the result was secondary although Uist played well to win 3-0, their first win in the competition and the first time the fixture was played at Bayhead. The picture at the top is also from that fixture with Lewis’ Scott Murray competing for the ball with Uist’s Steven Morrison as Sean “Rubens Banterchello” MacLeod looks on.
In 2010, Lewis made an emphatic 4-1 win as the fixture returned to Bayhead, with Titch Morrison, Calum Stamper and Paul Duke piling in the goals. The weather again was fairly inclement in the run up, but the game still drew a sizeable crowd as the weather improved rapidly in the second half.
2011 saw a Lewis team in their first season in the North leagues up against a Uist side who put up a good fight (although the fixture was reduced to 10 a side) in a 3-2 classic in blazing sunshine. Perhaps upwards of 500 people attended the match.
In 2012, Uist, with a couple of mainland additions caught Lewis napping and won the cup 2-1 on penalties after a 2-2 stalemate. There was some more fine weather and another bumper crowd, which meant a good day for Hebridean Shinty no matter the result.
2013 saw a dominant Lewis performance under the tutelage of Iain ‘Diablo’ Sinclair as the team made amends for the previous year with a 7-0 demolition of the Southern islanders. Duncan MacIntyre scored 4 in a complete performance against a strong Uist side.
2014 was a 4-0 win for Lewis with goals from Will, Duncan, Ally and Dukey. It was another win for Diablo’s troops over another strong Uist side.
2015 was another win for Lewis to make it 3 in a row for the first time. It was a tighter game with Uist restricting Lewis to only two goals, king of the Hebcelt Duncan scoring alongside Connor Chalmers. Diablo retired as manager having never lost the cup.
2016 saw a controversial last minute move to the astro at Smith Avenue, which robbed the game of appearances by Will Church and Keith “Trumisgarry” Macdonald but it was an entertaining match for what it was. Donald Lamont matched Duncan’s 2013 four goal haul alongside 2 from Scott MacLeod in a 6-nil game. However, Uist were much better than the scoreline suggested and Graham Black of Uist was a deserved man of the match.
2017 saw Uist up their game with Keith back in midfield and some new signings. It was the closest match in years and Lewis were pushed all the way for a 4-2 win. Dougie Shaw grabbed a brace alongside David Cleary and Paul Duke’s efforts.
What 2018 holds in store for the fixture is unsure other than it will be another exciting game in the heart of Stornoway!