Quite often I work down in Merkinch. They are lovely people, they have their troubles like any others and have what some may call ‘characters’, but for the most part they are decent folks who are very passionate about their area and their sports. I like them a lot. But, here’s my secret… I really want to stuff their football team!
Before I’m attacked by the hordes from the Ferry, let me tell you why. It’s because they always, always beat us at Clach Park.
It’s been 10 years since we won in the League there, and let me tell you ten years is a hellava long time to be taking it from your work colleagues, from your mates and even from a Minister of the Church who administers to his flock down there.
We to games on Wednesday night and in hope rather than expectation because history has taught us that Clach away is full of doom.
Take for example last year.
Firstly, Conor, our top goalscorer, goes off injured, but we cope with that and take the lead, Clach then get a man sent off so we are 1-0 up against ten men, it’s looking beautiful.
They have a keeper in goal who is about 12 and looks terrified every time we come up the park, at this point I’m thinking we are going to tank them.
Oh no this is Clach Park, where hope goes to die.
We get Easter sent off for kicking the 12-year-old, who goes on to have a blinder. They then go down to nine men with 20 minutes left, and we lose 2-1.
And it happens every time, despite our Masterplan to sign the team by default.
We now have Alan Pollock, Robbie Dunc, Sam Urquhart, all former Lillies, but still no change in our Greig St fortunes. Every time we go there, every year, every match, you try to keep hope alive and it is crushed like a butterfly on a wheel.
This year though, I have a plan, I have been hit by inspiration, I know what to do!
I was watching that classic of modern cinema, `Rocky`, last night and saw the part where Rocky goes to the Priest before the big fight to get his blessing and it struck me.
We have a Nairn County Chaplain this year.
And so on Wednesday night before the game, I’m getting the Nairn County Reverend to throw us out a blessing, to give us some divine intervention to face our Merkinch jinx.
It will certainly work, it will get us through, it will bring us that long awaited victory but if it doesn’, don’t blame me, blame God, he clearly supports Clach!