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Tain Thistle must wait for title defence after league is cancelled

By Will Clark

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TAIN Thistle will not defend its North West Sutherland League title this summer after organisers confirmed this season has been cancelled.

Tain Thistle won the North West Sutherland League
Tain Thistle won the North West Sutherland League

The North West Sutherland Amateur Football Association (NWSAFA) confirmed the 2020 league campaign has been declared null and void, with no cup competitions taking place either.

Football in Scotland was suspended on March 13 and with no date announced when amateur football will be allowed to return to action, there is no time left to hold the season.

NWSAFA secretary Hugh Morrison said the league committee agreed it was not possible to hold a league competition which has been cancelled for the first time since it was established in 1971.

He said: “Things have not progressed as quickly as we hoped and as time marched on, we realised that we were not going to fit anything in. “So we decided to null and void the season and the clubs know where they stand. ”

The North West Sutherland League has 13 members from across Sutherland and Ross-shire which play in two divisions. Champions Tain Thistle were due to play in Division One with Brora Wanderers, Golspie Stafford, Helmsdale United, Lairg Rovers and Lochinver. Division Two would have consisted of Dornoch City, Embo,Inver, Invergordon Social Club, Kinlochbervie, Lochbroom and Melvich.

Due to the distances between teams, most games would only be able to be played on a Saturday and Morrison said it would not be possible to fit these matches into a short timescale without clashing with other competitions.

“It is too big an area to do midweek games, although some might have been possible on the east coast,” he said. “

We would not have enough time to start up these divisions had we been allowed to carry on. All the clubs were happy to go with the decision. It is a common-sense decision.”

Read this week's Ross-shire Journal in full by clicking here.

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