Beaten finalists Deveron A in action against Stonehaven side Nesky in a qualifying tie during the recent North-east of Scotland canoe polo competition at Banff Swimming Pool.
DEVERON Canoe Club’s men’s team was unable to make home advantage count in the tense final of the third North-east of Scotland canoe polo competition at Banff Swimming Pool, just prior to the pool’s closure for repairs before Christmas.
The Deveron A team of Iain Brooker, Gary Thain, Tony Janetta, Findlay Brooker and Chris Rowe were up against a much younger team from Donside A, last year’s runners-up and one of the country’s fastest improving clubs, losing out 3-1 in a hugely competitive showdown.
Deveron scored first and controlled the game for the entire first half, with some excellent saves by goalkeeper Iain Brooker protecting their slender lead.
But, in the second half, Donside began to pass the ball better and they slowly clawed their way back into the game.
As they began to find the Deveron net, the Donside team gained confidence, and despite a spirited fightback from the home team, the visitors held on to take the trophy.
Both teams, however, had the satisfaction of improving on last year’s performances by finishing one place better than they did in 2011.
The improving Deveron men’s team has now finished fourth, third and now second in its last three competitions, boosting confidence that a win will come early in 2013.
In the group games, eight teams battled it out for places in the final.
Deveron’s B team of Ian Clark, Louise Barclay, Ted Banford, Ross Barron, Duncan Barclay and Matt Watt took second place in Group 1, only losing out to the eventual winners Donside A, to take their place in the second of the semi-finals. There they found themselves up against their own
A team, which had topped Group 2, and after an exciting end-to-end tussle, the A team paddled out 4-0 winners.
In the third and fourth place play-off game, Deveron B then had to play the winners of the competition for the last two years, Nesky from Stonehaven.
The game started at a terrific pace, with both teams having good efforts saved, before the experience of Nesky began to show.
In the end, they edged out the home side, winning 2-1.
THE BANFFSHIRE JOURNAL Tuesday, January 1, 2013