New captain wants community feel at Ross Sutherland
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Andy Mackay wants to bring a sense of community back to Ross Sutherland.
The 24-year-old back row is the club’s new captain for next season, after returning from a year playing in the Premiership with Selkirk.
Before that, Mackay had been in France playing semi-professional level and professional rugby.
He has learned a lot from those experiences, but one key aspect of those clubs he wants to recreate in Invergordon is the camaraderie at the club on and off the pitch.
“When I was down in Selkirk, there was a massive feeling of community,” he explained.
“We would get at least a couple of hundred people down to watch every game. It just felt like, as players, we thrived off that.
“It was such a better atmosphere for everyone involved – management, players, coaches and the fans as well.
“I feel like we can give a fair bit back to the community by giving people an outlet.
“The younger people can come and train, and we can help out in and around the community to give quite a lot back.”
The planned new clubhouse will go a long way to helping create the desired atmosphere, and with a group of players returning to the squad there seems to be a strong platform for the club to go on and be successful.
With a new coaching team also in place for the Stags, Mackay certainly has high hopes for next season.
He has not ruled out Ross Sutherland’s chances of making a push for the Caledonia North Two title, but he made sure to credit his predecessor Jamie Johnston with building the foundation for him.
“We’re retaining a lot of players from last year as well, a lot of experienced players such as the previous captain Jamie,” Mackay said.
“He’s hopefully staying on, and he did a lot of work building that platform that we have.
“As an outsider last year, the club was lucky to stay in Caledonia North Two, but I’m really looking forward to a blockbuster season with the clubhouse, a lot of players coming back and a lot of potential.
“I think we can do something great this year.”