A HAT trick by Kevin Thain, shinty's former national player of the

year, who made a surprise come-back at the weekend for Glasgow Mid

Argyll, has made shinty followers far and wide sit up and take notice.

Thain's presence in the city team's attack against Kilmory, heavily

rumoured for some weeks, means they will now be considered as potential

high-flyers in shinty's premier competition, the Camanachd Cup, which

gets under way this weekend.

Thain's move to Aberdeen, brought about by his employment in the North

Sea, led to his disappearance from the Kingussie forward line but his

comeback had been rumoured for some time.

His hat-trick againt Kilmory indicated that he has not lost his feel

for goal, and although he will not be available every weekend, his

presence could make a crucial contribution to Mid Argyll's cup effort,

starting -- subject to availability -- with their tie with Ballachulish

this weekend.

Fort William's 6-4 defeat at Glenurquhart and Newtonmore's draw at

Caberfeidh may have dealt their championship hopes a fatal blow, with

Kingussie -- 5-1 victors at Skye -- now a point ahead at the top of

division one.

Oban Camanachd's seemingly inevitable push towards the south division

one title continued with a solid 4-0 victory at Ballachulish while

nearest challengers Inveraray cruised through to the semi-final of the

Keyline MacAulay Cup with a respectable win over Oban Celtic.

They now meet Oban Camanachd four times in the next few weeks,

beginning this Saturday with their Camanachd Cup first-round tie. There

then follow two league matches and the MacAulay Cup semi-final. These

games will decide the destination of most of the south silverware.


Glenmorangie Sutherland Cup. Third round -- Lochside Rovers 5,

Strachur 0.

Third round replay -- Lovat 0, Oban Celtic 1; Newtonmore 2, Lochcarron

1 (game abandoned, referee injured).

Glenmorangie Balliemore Cup. Second round -- Inverness 7, Tayforth 0.

North Area. Glenmorangie Qualifying Cup. Second round, second replay

-- Beauly 0, Lovat 1. Valerie Fraser Cup. First round -- Kilmallie 2,

Lochaber 3; Strathglass 7, Glengarry 2. Marine Harvest League. Division

1 -- Caberfeidh 2, Newtonmore 2; Glenurquhart 6, Fort William 4; Skye 1,

Kingussie 5. Division 3 -- Beauly 3, Lochaber 2; Fort William 4,

Glenurquhart 1; Kingussie 4, Skye 0. Division 4 -- Glengarry 3,

Inverness 2; Kincraig 1, Aberdeen 6; Kinlochshiel 2, Kilmallie 0;

Lochbroom 9, Caberfeidh 3.

South Area -- Keyline MacAulay Cup. Second round -- Inveraray 3, Oban

Celtic 1. Bullough Cup. Second round -- Strachur 1, Bute 0. Marine

Harvest League. Division 1 -- Ballachulish 0, Oban Camanachd 4; Kilmory

0, Glasgow Mid Argyll 6; Kyles Athletic 6, Glenorchy 3. Division 2 --

Taynuilt 1, Glasgow University 3. Division 3 -- Glasgow Mid Argyll 2,

Inveraray 3; Glenorchy 6, Furnace 0.