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Fraserburgh’s Ryan Cowie hoping play-offs provide another family occasion to cherish

Fraserburgh's Ryan Cowie is relishing taking part in the pyramid play-offs
Fraserburgh's Ryan Cowie is relishing taking part in the pyramid play-offs

He’s got a unique relationship with his manager and Ryan Cowie hopes Fraserburgh’s band of brothers have another reason to celebrate after the pyramid play-offs.

The Broch tackle Lowland League champions Bonnyrigg Rose Athletic at New Dundas Park today in the first leg of the play-off semi-final.

Boss Mark Cowie guided Fraserburgh to their first Breedon Highland League title since 2002, which has earned them this shot at promotion to the SPFL.

There’s a close-knit squad at Bellslea and younger brother Ryan says he’s just one of the lads.

The 30-year-old defender said: “We’ve got a good professional relationship – Mark treats me exactly the same as any player.

“He’s really professional and that shows in the way he goes about the job.

“When we’re at Fraserburgh, I see him as a manager and, when we’re at family things, I see him as my big brother.

“That’s how it works and that’s probably how it’s got to be.

“I think in the first couple of years there probably was a couple of clashes.

“But we soon sorted that out because it wasn’t helping him as the manager or me as a player.

Fraserburgh celebrate winning the Breedon Highland League title with Ryan Cowie pictured, fourth from left, and manager Mark Cowie, pictured right

“I’ve got a lot of respect for what Mark’s done to the club over the years. He’s got a vision of where he wants us to go.

“Every year another piece has fitted into the jigsaw and then after a few years you look and think: ‘how have we got here?’

“The whole family is behind Fraserburgh and it’s probably the main focus of the whole family.

“There was a lot of pride when the final whistle went last Saturday and we got to see everyone’s happy faces.

“It was definitely something to cherish, but it only makes us hungry for more.”

Keen for more glory

After the high of winning the Highland League last weekend, Cowie and his Fraserburgh team-mates are eager to deliver more glory in the play-offs.

He added: “Winning the league was as good a feeling as I’ve had in football, but it makes you hungry for more.

WATCH: Episode 38 of Highland League Weekly – Fraserburgh’s title-clinching win over Forres; plus Clach v Buckie Thistle

“Now we’ve got the chance to go and compete in this tie and potentially another tie and we have the chance to bring more joy to the town.

“We want to give everyone connected with the club good moments like we had last weekend.”

Point to prove against Bonnyrigg

Cowie expects a tricky encounter against Bonnyrigg, who won the Lowland League by 14 points.

But he hopes Fraserburgh can impose themselves on the tie with their usual high intensity style as both sides aim to reach the final against League Two strugglers Cowdenbeath.

Cowie said: “Throughout this season we’ve realised we need to stick to what we’re good at, which is being aggressive, working hard, pressing the opposition.

“Mark has managed us well throughout the last couple of months, which has allowed us to go into the play-offs in the best possible shape.

“Everyone’s available and we’ll be able to stick to what we want to, which is to work hard and be aggressive.

Ryan Cowie, right, in action for Fraserburgh

“We’re keen to prove a point, because I think people have doubted whether we can compete with Bonnyrigg over two legs.

“If we were to get through, they’d probably say the same if we were playing Cowdenbeath.

“But players thrive on that sort of thing and it probably helped with our away form in the league.

“It seemed to be expected we would drop points during the run-in, but it just fuelled our fire to make us compete harder.”

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