Buckie Thistle’s Dale Wood is determined to reach his first cup final at Breedon Highland League level.
The Jags face Aberdeen at Balmoor Stadium, Peterhead tonight in the semi-final of the Morrison Motors (Turriff) Aberdeenshire Shield.
During his time as a Highland League player, Wood, who was previously with Forres Mechanics and Rothes prior to his summer move to Buckie, hasn’t reached a final.
Thistle were beaten finalists in the Shield last season and are chasing their first trophy since 2017.
Wood, 26, said: “Everyone’s at the club to try to win things. The club hasn’t managed to do it in recent years, having been close on several occasions.
“The fans follow us and back us home and away, and hopefully we can give something back to them by hopefully getting to another final and going a step further than the club did last season by winning it.
“I played in a Junior cup final with Dufftown and lost it, but I’ve never been to a final at Highland League level.
“But I’m at a stage now where I want to win things and not just play in the Highland League.
“I want to win a few honours and that’s one of the reasons I signed for Buckie – and hopefully we can get a step closer to doing that.”
Stop-start spell for Jags
Wood is keen to get back in action. Buckie’s clash with Lossiemouth was postponed at the weekend, which means they have only played two games in the last month.
The midfielder, who can also play at right-back, added: “October was quite frustrating because we were on quite a good run after getting beaten by Banks o’ Dee.
“We were hoping to get a run of games and try to keep putting points on the board.
“It’s been stop-start, but we’ve trained well and we’ve had some boys come back from injury as well, which has been good.”
❌️❌️❌️❌️ MATCH POSTPONED ❌️❌️❌️❌️
— Buckie Thistle FC (@BuckieThistle) November 4, 2023
It remains to be seen what team Aberdeen will field this evening.
In the first round of the Shield, a host of first-team players featured against Fraserburgh, while the side that defeated Turriff United in the quarter-final was more youthful.
Regardless of who lines up, Wood knows it will be a stern test for Buckie.
He said: “We expect a very tough game – they’re a full-time side.
“At the start of the season, we played Dundee B in the Challenge Cup and we were 3-0 down before we got started.
“So we know we need to start the game well and try to take the game to them.
“We don’t know what their team will be like. They’ve got a Europa Conference League game on Thursday (against PAOK), so there might not be too many first-team players involved.
“Whether it’s a young Aberdeen team or one with first-team players, we know they’ll be a really good side.”