Orkney win inter-county hockey to retain Lady Hamilton Cup

Orkney have beaten Shetland in the inter-county hockey in Kirkwall 2-0.

An early goal from Hannah Cromarty from a penalty corner gave the reds a lead they rarely looked like relinquishing, and a late strike from Claire Irvine sealed the victory.

Shetland pushed Orkney all the way, but again came undone at the hands of their old foes.

That stretches Orkney’s winning run in the fixture to 17 matches.

Read our match updates below, and watch the coverage of the match at the bottom of the page.


13:30 – And that’s it – there’s celebrations as Orkney retain the Lady Hamilton Cup with a 2-0 win over Shetland.

13:28 – Shetland are huffing and puffing but this resolute Orkney defence is offering no encouragement. The reds seem happy to see the game out now.

13:21 – A disappointed Shetland struggling to cope with Orkney now, and the reds almost make it 3-0, the ball eventually drittling past the post.

13:20 – Disaster. That’s surely it now as Orkney make it 2-0. Shetland commit players forward and when the ball is driven in from the right hand side of the Shetland D, Orkney have two players waiting and the ball is fired into the far left corner.

13:14 – Bethany Laurenson slaloms through the Orkney defence but clears the bar with her reverse shot.

13:13 – Here we go for the final quarter.

13:11 – It’s all-or-nothing time for Shetland, who need to score in the final quarter to at least force extra-time. There’s really not been much between the two sides, and the blues will hope there is one chance left in this match for them.

13:09 – Ouch. One of the Orkney players takes a high ball to the face, and with that the referee blows for the end of the third quarter.

13:02 – Shetland go close again, once more breaking down the left before a shot is drilled into the side of the net.

12:58 – A half-chance for Shetland. The ball is well-worked down the left-hand side and drilled across the box, but it’s behind everyone. We’re starting to see some better link-up play from the blues.

12:53 – A reverse shot from Orkney is well saved from Megan Nicholson, who directs the ball away from goal. Shetland almost break up the pitch but a pass is overhit and the chance is gone.

12:52 – We’re back under way, and Orkney immediately win a penalty corner – but the opportunity is squandered.

12:47 – And that’s half-time, with Orkney still leading 1-0. Shetland have rode their luck at times defensively but are still well in this game. Time now to get the kettle on before the second half starts …

12:46 – A big chance for Shetland just as the half ends. The ball falls loose in the Orkney D and two players are waiting to drive the ball home but the Orkney goalie, who has been alert all game, throws herself at the ball and clears.

12:42 – Huge chance for Orkney, who are really turning the screw now. A reverse shot is saved well by Megan Nicholson, and Orkney can’t force the ball over the line.

12:41 – Orkney’s number 6 breaks free and bears down on goal, but her shot is deflected and eventually cleared. Orkney win another penalty corner but it’s well defended.

12:33 – Penalty corner to Shetland. Unfortunately there seems to be some indecision about what to do when the ball is played out and the chance is lost.

12:32 – And now a chance at the other end – a shot is fired at the Orkney goal from distance and takes a huge deflection, almost arriving at a Shetland forward’s stick two yards from goal but the Orkney keeper kicks clear.

12:27 – A huge chance for Orkney goes begging at the start of the second quarter. Shetland lose possession in their own half and the Orkney forward just has Shetland keeper Megan Nicholson to beat, but drags the ball wide. A big let-off.

12:26 – That’s the end of the first quarter. Shetland have been bright going forward but Orkney always look dangerous when they beat the press and get into the other half. The referee’s whistle has been the busiest player on the pitch this far.

12:25 – The resultant shot goes well over the bar and Orkney remain 1-0 up.

12:24 – The blues have been much better since that goal and have their first penalty corner now.

12:19 – 1-0 Orkney. They work the ball well from the corner and the ball is fired through a ruck of players and in off the post.

12:18 – First penalty corner goes to Orkney. The ball is cleared off the line after a goalmouth scramble but Orkney have another penalty corner.

12:12 – The Orkney keeper is off her line quickly to snuff out a half-chance for Rhea Nicolson, and then Nicolson can only strike the ball at the goalie’s feet after Shetland win the ball back high up the pitch. Shetland are putting a lot of pressure on the Orkney defence when they have the ball.

12:10 – Reassuringly we can still hear the referee’s whistle over the wind. It’s getting plenty of use in the scrappy early stages.

12:07 – After Orkney hockey’s equivalent of the Haka, which involves bashing their sticks together in a circle, we’re ready to get under way. Shetland will pass back to start the inter-county.

12:02 – The players are out and ready to go for this year’s hockey inter-county. We’re just getting the line-ups and then we should be good to go on a (slightly) better day in Orkney than it is in Shetland – although it still seems to be quite windy.


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