Match against Halkirk called off for fourth time
The Shetland football team was thwarted for the fourth time at the weekend in its attempts to defend the Jock Mackay Memorial Cup.
The quarter-final tie on Saturday against North Caledonian League leaders Halkirk was called off but not before the squad had made it as far as Orkney.
Fourteen players, minus late call-off Joe Kay, and a number of officials travelled south on the Hjaltland on Friday evening. They then spent the night on the Hamnavoe in Stromness, thinking they would be heading to Scrabster on the 6.30am departure on Saturday.
However, word came through early in the morning that the Halkirk pitch was unplayable and the squad had about half an hour to get off the ferry and make other arrangements.
Three of the players managed to fly back to Shetland on Saturday but the remainder of the party had to spend another night in Orkney. The squad had been due to return home on the Saturday night ferry but the Kirkwall-Lerwick leg was cancelled by NorthLink and the boat only sailed from Aberdeen to Kirkwall and back again.
The rest of the squad eventually caught the late-night ferry on Sunday, finally making it back home on Monday morning.
Player James Aitken, who has been appointed as Shetland Football Association press secretary this season, said it was very disappointing to have the game called off for a fourth time.
There is no word yet on when a fifth attempt will be made to complete the fixture will go ahead, but three teams are already through to the semi-finals. Golspie Sutherland and Invergordon defeated Alness and Lewis & Harris respectively while Thurso, who Shetland beat in last year’s final, received a bye to the last four.