April return is earmarked for youth shinty

The Camanachd Association has announced that it expects youth shinty to recommence when Scotland returns to the tier three phase of coronavirus restrictions on April 26.

With the rollout of the Covid-19 vaccine well underway and the most vulnerable people in our communities accessing the vaccine the Camanachd Association is excited by the prospect of 2021 and looks forward to working with its members, clubs, partners and sponsors to deliver the best year possible.

Willie MacDonald, Camanachd Association Youth Director, said: “Restarting our sport is our number one priority moving into 2021 and we are encouraged by the likelihood of a return to training and then competition from as early as April 26.

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"The Camanachd Association Development Team have been in constant contact with our clubs since the turn of the year and this ongoing consultation has been used to inform the above proposals.

"Starting youth training is the first step on a road to the return of our ancient sport in its truest form.”

Preliminary plans for the return of youth shinty include having: First Phase Local Mowi Leagues of four teams giving six league fixtures for each team at U-14 level; Second Phase of Mowi Leagues with new groups determined by ranking in First Phase, North/South split remaining; Local Mowi Leagues for U-17 level plus Mowi London Shield and WJ Cameron Cup; possibly moving regional competitions such as the Cottages.com MacTavish U-17 Cup and MacQuisten U-17 Cup to a later stage in the season; national cup competitions regionalised in the early rounds to reduce long distance travelling (including the MacMaster U-14 Cup and U-14 Development Cup); Tulloch Cup – local North and South based festivals; MacKay Cup, with early rounds regionalised.

Derek Keir, Camanachd Association CEO, said: “Restarting shinty is a hugely exciting prospect but it is also a vital outlet to reconnect our communities and provide a safe place for adults, older people and young people to play – to bring the community together, to have fun and be active.

“Shinty clubs play a crucial role at the heart of communities. We welcome exiting lockdown and are excited about the potential return of youth shinty and Mowi Leagues when it is safe to do so.”

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