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Club scene: Aberdeen Grammar

Kevin Wyness is unlikely to be forging a career in the diplomatic corps any time soon.

Kevin Wyness, centre, is sure his side can improve. Picture: Kenny Elrick
Kevin Wyness, centre, is sure his side can improve. Picture: Kenny Elrick

The Aberdeen Grammar coach is one of life's passionate souls, who never shirks from speaking his mind and to hell with the consequences.

He thinks the present Scottish domestic structure is a mess, regards the failure of the sport's administrators to grasp the notion of moving away from an all-winter schedule as "nonsensical", and is sceptical about plans to transform the present system into some kind of "Super League", whether organised on a club or a regional basis. Other matters discussed were not for publication. Suffice to conclude that Wyness lives up to P G Wodehouse's description of a Scotsman with a grievance.

He has plenty on his plate in any case. The Rubislaw side have slipped to the foot of the RBS Premiership, one point behind Currie and two further adrift of Stirling County. While their predicament is far from hopeless, they have lost the winning habit, whereas Currie - who seemed destined for the drop a month or so ago - have produced a spirited recovery.

Too often for Wyness' comfort, he has watched his team either squander promising positions, or be undone in the final few minutes of matches. The fact they have only won three of their 14 games speaks for itself. Aberdeen probably need to double that number in their four remaining contests - they have still to play Currie, Heriot's, Melrose and Glasgow Hawks - and cannot afford the profligacy which has plagued them in recent campaigns.

If their coach is feeling the strain, though, he is keeping signs of it tightly under wraps. "I still have faith that we can climb back up the table," he said. "We have shown plenty of mettle in our pack all season but there have been one or two results which might come back to haunt us if we are not careful.

"The structure is the same for everybody, so I am not making excuses, but when we went to Ayr [on December 21], the weather was dismal, the light wasn't great and the pitch was muddy. I wonder how many people really enjoyed the whole experience.

"People keep talking about sorting out the league and now we have all this stuff about a 'super' competition. But, to be honest, I have to prioritise on Aberdeen and I think it is important for any national tournament that we have sides involved from every part of the country. As things stand, Dundee are not in the top flight and we realise the consequences of not staying up.

"In most of our games, I have felt we have been in contention but the task now is to focus on these four big fixtures and show our qualities. I just wish we were not preparing for Currie by playing Kirkcaldy, Howe of Fife and Aberdeenshire, and that is no disrespect to any of them. It is simply saying that to mix up these different events means there is no cohesion or logic to how the season unfolds and I don't think it does any of us any favours. We hear about how people are committed to improving skills and selling the sport to supporters, then we organise the majority of games in the middle of winter."

Wyness was similarly incredulous when Tony McGinness was not included in the Scottish Clubs international squad, since the coach views his flanker as one of the best in the Premiership. "Let's just say if there are others who are doing better, I haven't seen them," he said.

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