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Jamie Watt hails ‘unbelievable’ Banks o’ Dee after reaching Aberdeenshire Shield final

The Banks o' Dee players celebrate after their penalty shoot-out win against Buckie Thistle in the Aberdeenshire Shield
The Banks o' Dee players celebrate after their penalty shoot-out win against Buckie Thistle in the Aberdeenshire Shield

Banks o’ Dee co-manager Jamie Watt described reaching the Morrison Motors (Turriff) Aberdeenshire Shield final as “unbelievable”.

The Junior outfit set up a meeting with Huntly after defeating Buckie Thistle 3-1 on penalties following a 1-1 draw in the semi-final at Victoria Park.

Dee became the first Junior side to win the Evening Express Aberdeenshire Cup in October and are now 90 minutes away from becoming the first Junior team to lift the Shield.

Watt, who is joint-boss alongside Roy McBain, said: “It’s an unbelievable achievement, they showed a different side to them with the grit they showed.

“When you’re not at your best you have to stay in the game and we did that and we’re in the final which is the important thing.

“To have the chance to win both the Aberdeenshire Cup and the Shield is ridiculous really.

“It will be a tough final against Huntly, but what we’ve done this season has been a great effort from everyone in the squad and at the club.”

Hobday the hero

Buckie had the better chances across the 90 minutes, but didn’t make them count.

When it came to the penalty shoot-out, Banks o’ Dee goalkeeper Fraser Hobday was the hero as he saved the Jags’ first two spot-kicks from Sam Urquhart and Sam Pugh.

Watt added: “It was a tough night, Buckie were well up for it and it was one of our poorer performances.

Fraser Hobday, in yellow, is mobbed by team mates after Banks o’ Dee defeated Buckie Thistle on penalties

“To get to penalties is a credit to the boys, sometimes you’ve got to dig deep and show character.

“I never had any doubts that they would score the penalties. Fraser Hobday was buzzing for the penalties and he pulled off a couple of saves.

“He was solid all night, Fraser, and had that confidence going into the shoot-out.”

Chances missed for Jags

Dee took the lead in the 24th minute when Michael Philipson fired an unstoppable shot into the top left corner from 25 yards.

The Jags levelled on 33 minutes with Marcus Goodall finishing at the back post after Sam Morrison flicked on Andrew MacAskill’s corner.

Goodall also passed up one on one chances in both halves, while Urquhart hit a post and Max Barry rattled the crossbar in the second period as Dee rode their luck.

In the shoot-out, Hobday saved from Urquhart and Pugh, although Jack Murray scored for Buckie. MacAskill firing over the bar meant conversions from Jack Henderson, Philipson and Rob Armstrong sent the visitors into the final.

Marcus Goodall celebrates scoring for Buckie against Banks o’ Dee

Buckie boss Graeme Stewart said: “It’s disappointing.

“I’m not worrying about the penalties. We probably did enough in the game to deserve to win it, especially first half – I thought we were excellent.

“Banks o’ Dee showed what a good team they are, but I think we did deserve to win it. We hit the post, hit the bar and had a few one on ones.

“But fair play to Banks o’ Dee, because they stuck at it, worked hard and got the result in the end.

“We didn’t take the chances we had in the game, which is disappointing.”

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