Our first national tournament took place yesterday on the 3rd February. The squad travelled down to England, taking part in the Duncan Scales Memorial Cup, the tournament consisted of 2 Scotland teams and 3 English club sides.
From the beginning we shocked everyone with a fantastic 3-0 victory from Scotland Yellow against championship side Electric Eels, the team of Thomas Pettigrew, Chris Jacquin, Connor McCole and Nicky Duncan making history in Scotland’s first ever win with 2 goals from Connor McCole and a 3rd to seal it from Nicky Duncan assisted by Chris Jacquin. Not to mention our first clean sheet from Scotland’s no.1 Thomas Pettigrew. As team performances go it doesn’t get much better than that! Showing we are not here just to take part but to compete.
Scotland Blue, up against premiership side Leeds Chariots, showed progress and kept the game tight at half time with just 2 goals in it but after a close 2nd half Leeds Chariots finished the game off with 2 more goals winning 4-0. A tough first game for Scotland Blues with the score line being harsh but a clear improvement from the Middlesbrough encounter in December 2018.
Scotland Yellow continued their winning ways with an impressive 2-0 victory over Leeds Dynamos, 2 great finishes from Nicky Duncan and yet another clean sheet from Thomas Pettigrew which secured the victory.
Scotland Blues now had 2 games back to back, first up against Leeds Dynamos. They got on the scoresheet for first time in the day through Eythan Galloway, 1-0 lead at halftime. After controlling most of the game, a lapse of concentration at the back gave Leeds Dynamos an equaliser and despite pressure from the Scots, Leeds Dynamos held on for the 1-1 draw. Perhaps disappointed not to get the win but the team clearly wanted to push on from getting their first point of the day, which they did in style! A 3-0 win facing Electric Eels matching Scotland Yellow result earlier in the day with an excellent performance, 2 goals from Eythan Galloway as the young man continues his great goal scoring form and Kien Speed adding his first Scotland goal.
The results set up very nicely for the Scotland sides going head to head, Scotland Yellow coming in full of confidence with 2 wins and clean sheets knowing another win could give them a chance of winning the cup. Scotland Blues with mixed form but on the back of a win knew that they still had a chance of being runners up and would want to show they can go toe to toe with fellow countrymen. Pride at stake!
In what was possibly the best football of the day, in a free-flowing back and forth game Scotland Yellow took the lead early on with a tidy finish from Connor McCole. Scotland Blue responded fast with a nice passing move finished off by Kieran Burns for his first Scotland goal. The Scotland Blue went ahead after a mix up resulting in an own goal 2-1. Scotland Yellow refused to give in bouncing back from the penalty spot put away cool and calmly by Nicky Duncan, game on! With the game on a knife-edge Scotland Blue stepped up to go back in front through Kieran Burns another well placed finish at the end of some fast pace quality play going 3-2 up. Scotland Yellow pushed and gave everything they had but their winning streak came to an end with Scotland Blues going 4-2 ahead. Kieran Burns getting his 3rd goal completing the hatrick, first to bag 3 and claim the match ball in a Scotland shirt, on a historic day for our national side.
A thrilling game, both sides putting on a show for the English spectators.
Scotland Yellow had one last game against Leeds Chariots who came out determined to claim the cup and so proved to be too strong coming out with the 5-0 win.
Congratulations to Leeds Chariots on winning the Duncan Scales Memorial Cup, they set the standard throughout the day and deservedly lifted the cup.
Overall a day to remember in Scottish Powerchair Football history. First wins, first goal scorers, first hatrick and first clean sheets. Scotland Blue and Scotland Yellow finished 2nd and 3rd respectively, an outstanding effort from all players, coaches and supporters. Players showed their quality and can take a lot from this experience, rightly co
me away from this tournament knowing they’ve done their country proud. Onwards and upwards from here.
Report by Kieran Burns