Caberfeidh must use semi final hurt to win shinty silverware
CABERFEIDH manager Jodi Gorski wants to use their heart breaking Camanachd Cup semi final defeat to achieve success in 2020.
In arguably one of the best semi finals in the competition’s history, Cabers equalised four times before going down 7-5 in extra time against Newtonmore at Bught Park in Inverness.
It was the first time the Strathpeffer outfit had reached the semi final of the Camanachd Cup since 1963 and were bidding to make the final for the first time since 1939.
Three years ago Caberfeidh were playing in the second tier of shinty in the National Division. Now they have established themselves as a mid-table team in the Premiership and currently have scored more goals than any other team in the top flight with 36.
While disappointed after the final whistle, Gorski doesn’t want his team to look back with regret. He wants to use the semi-final defeat as a platform to reach the final next year.
“We have to make sure we build on this now,” he said.
“There have been a lot of good teams that have got to the semi finals and done nothing in years afterwards.
“But we have to build on this.
“We have to try and get a step further next year.”
Hundreds of fans made their voices heard to support Caberfeidh creating a superb atmosphere at Bught Park.
Gorski paid tribute to the Cabers support saying it showed how shinty is growing as a sport in Ross-shire and the work they have done to promote the sport in the Strathpeffer area is paying off.
“We knew there were going to be heaps of them there and that it would be loud,” he said.
“It showed shinty is alive and kicking, there is still plenty of life in the game. Some say that shinty is dying out.
“We have over 40 primary schools kids turning up at our training sessions.
“At senior level we have 35 to 40 players.
“We have lots of players coming through our system.”
Gorski was proud of his team’s never say die attitude highlighted by captain Craig Morrison’s hat trick and Ryan Mackay’s 89th minute wonder strike that made it 4-4 to bring the semi-final into extra time.
“I can’t fault the boys for their performance as everybody was there for us.
“The first 20 minutes we were a bit sluggish due to nerves and it wasn’t very good.
“But once Craig scored that was it. The confidence was there and the belief was there that we could win it.
“Unfortunately we went behind five times and only came back four times.
“But they gave everything they had and I can’t fault them for their effort.”
Caberfeidh gave away two penalties during the match, one of which Gorski said was the wrong decision.
“The first one wasn’t a penalty but the second one our goalkeeper threw the stick at the ball so that was a penalty.
“Sometimes these decisions go for you, sometimes they don’t."
However, he was proud Caberfeidh played their part in a classic semi final and now looks forward to returning to league action at Kinlochshiel in next Saturday’s Ross-shire derby.
“It was an entertaining game and it was a pity this wasn’t the final as the last few Camanachd Cup finals haven’t been great.
“But we dust ourselves off and we look to win next week.”