David Ampleford reckons the Third Lanark AFC playing squad deserve every ounce of praise for their commitment during the current pandemic. The famous Hi-Hi were stopped in their tracks by a 4-2 defeat at Waterside Amateurs earlier this month followed by a Scottish Government 16-day Circuit Breaker.The latter will not be lifted until October 25 (midnight), but the Third Lanark boss prefers to reflect on the positive side of a return to playing.
Said David:. “We are looking forward to getting back into it. Like Bearsden, we have got Gartcosh United and Castlemilk Dynamo within 5 days of each other, so it is going to be a tough return for us, but what will matter is how we conduct ourselves. While these matches are completely meaningless to us, we will be fielding the strongest team we can for both and doing our best to put a dent in either of their title hopes. The results won’t matter to us,. but the performance and how we conduct ourselves will.”
Third Lanark left themselves with an uphill task against Waterside, who adapted to the heavy, underfoot conditions and marched into a 4-0 lead early doors before the visitors could even regroup.
The Hi-Hi converted a penalty kick just before the interval and scored another in the second half.
David told me “The game should never have been on as the grass was in a terrible condition. The two teams both agreed to go ahead along with the referee, and Waterside got the better of us.”
“I reckon up until their first goal we had some control in the game, but we were trying to play the wrong type of football for the conditions. By the end, the conditions were atrocious and it was just each team blasting the ball as far as it could go.”
“Waterside were deserved winners on the day. I honestly take nothing away from the game. I don’t think the players will ever have to experience those conditions again.”
“Ten new players have joined us, and a few former players have returned. It has been tough gelling the players when we can’t socialise etc, but I have been really impressed that we have been able to train twice a week since we returned.”
“I have said all along that for us to compete in the Central Scottish AFL we need to train twice and I am delighted to see it has come to fruition.”