Central Scottish AFL Over-35s Match Secretary Chris Wilson gives Scottish Amateur Football News followers the lowdown on his appointment and how the 2018 Scottish Cup campaign unfolded, writes Tom Scott.
The Competition started 15-17th June, and ended on Friday, 12th October 2018. Possil YM have made the Cup their pride and joy. The 2018 Final saw them retain the Cup, and overall they have been three-time winners.
Chris Wilson takes up the Story……..
The Road to a Scottish Cup Final for everyone Over 35
I knew little about the over 35s Scottish Cup set up other than it had been set up by Alex McDowell from the Friday Night Football Central and he was stepping down from the role of Match Secretary at the end of the 2017 competition. I was approached by the Scottish Amateur FA to see if I wanted to take over from Alex and as I had been involved in the 35s set up in the Central Scottish AFL I thought why not. I knew I had big shoes to fill by taking over from Alex but I would give it a go.
Applications for the tournament went out and that season we had 63 clubs from across six Leagues. The bulk of which were from the Friday Night Central with 47 entries and the rest of the entries made up from the Central Scottish AFL, Ayrshire AFL, South East and Lothian and Edinburgh Leagues.
The first round was scheduled to be played over the weekend of 15th to 17th June as teams either played on a Friday night or a Sunday afternoon.
Early favourites were Cup Holders Possil YM from the Friday night Central League, who had came through with a 1st round away victory over fellow Friday night Northside FC. Also in with a good shot were Cumbernauld Colts from the Central Scottish AFL who had a good few ex professionals on their books. Colts came through the 1st round home win against St Peters Paisley.
The 2nd round would keep both clubs apart with Possil YM again away to a very strong Corkerhill FC and Cumbernauld Colts at home again to Clyde Valley Vets FC.
It would take penalties to separate Corkerhill and Possil YM with YM winning 2 – 3 in a penalty shootout. Cumbernauld Colts however had a slightly easier win through to the third round winning 6 – 3 however I know the game was tighter than the score looks.
The 3rd round draw for the Cup would see Possil YM with their first home tie of the competition and they would ultimately play Eastercraigs FC who were waiting on the outcome of an appeal as Glasgow Bar had player an underage outfield player, allowed in the Friday Night Central League but against the rules of this competition. Cumbernauld would have another home tie against Veiwfield FC.
With both clubs coming through the 3rd round they are in the pot for the Quarter Final draw, with Possil YM drawn away yet again to Easthall Star FC and Cumbernauld Colts also away to Bishopton FC. Both clubs come through their ties with good victories which sees them join Penileee FC and Stenhousemuir FC in the Semi Final Draw.
Both Semi Final ties were scheduled for the same night Friday 28th September 2018 at Dalziel Park 7.30 KO. The draw was as follows.
Penilee FC v Possil YM FC
Stenhousemuir FC v Cumbernauld Colts FC
Both Semi Finals were hard fought but fair games, it is never easy to come so far and then lose out in the Semi Final of any competition but both Possil and Cumbernauld took the spoils on the night and progressed through to the final which would be held at Airdrie’s Excelsior Stadium on Friday 12th October 2018. On the night it was a close affair and after 90 minutes both side could not be separated with a goal apiece.
With no extra time due to dare I say age the dreaded penalties loomed. It was not to be Cumbernauld’s evening as they were beaten in the end by some fine goal keeping. Possil YM were victorious in the end and lifted the cup for the 2nd time.
I have to say that my first season as match secretary of this competition was an enjoyable experience and the football was played at a very high and passionate manner, and I was already looking forward to next season’s competition and hope for more entries.
I would like to end with thanking all the clubs, and officials for their help and also to the match officials who helped me throughout all the rounds. Like them or loath them, but without them we would have no football.
Photographs also kindly provided by Mr Chris Wilson.
Over-35s Football is booming – and today we turn the spotlight firmly on the Central Scottish Amateur set-up through the eyes of Match Secretary Mr Chris Wilson, who not only provided SAFN with a detailed report, but also photographs from the 2018-2019 season, when Fullarton Park AFC won the treble, writes Tom Scott.
At the end of Season 2016/2017 the 35s Veterans League comprising of twelve teams approached the Central Scottish AFL to come under their umbrella. Their current league secretary was retiring and with no apparent heir to that job the approach was made and they were accepted into the league set up for season 2017/2018.
I was approached by the league to take up the role as the match secretary by the then league President Alex Owen and was happy to take up that role. The set up was to play 6 league fixtures every 2nd Sunday and also compete in three cup competitions. The Presidents Cup, William Summers Cup and the Hugh Clark Trophy.
The roll of Honour at the end of that season was League Winners: Wishaw HSFP FC President Cup Winners: Cumbernauld Colts FC William Summers Cup Winners: Carfin FC Hugh Clark Trophy Winners: Motherwell Community Trust FC
Season 2018/2019 started in August 2018 with the league campaign underway on the 2nd Sunday with again twelve clubs/ With Sponsorship secured for the over35s Section from Benchmark Advocates and Autopoint Ltd Larkhall. With that funding in place the League Executive put in place medals for all Cup Competitions, League winners and also Player of the Year for that season.
Also during that season the league had three club taking part in the Over 35s Scottish Cup with all clubs giving a good account of themselves in a very competitive competition. Our own Cumbernauld Colts made it all the way through to the Final in that year, with Colts losing out in penalties to a very strong Possil YM FC. It was a game that could have went either way.
Fullarton Park were the standout club of that season with them winning nearly everything on offer in the league with the exception of the Presidents Cup The Roll of Honour Season 2018/2019 League Winners: Fullarton Park FC Presidents Cup Winners: Carfin FC William Summers Cup Winners : Fullarton Park FC Hugh Clark Trophy Winners: Fullarton Park FC Player of the Year: James Kerr Fullarton Park FC
Season 2019/2020 well the least said about that the better, other than it was a start stop season, and also seen the departure of a few of our clubs due to lack of players. The League looked to try and attract new clubs and we were fortunate to get one of our Saturday Amateur Clubs to enter for season 2020/2021 BSC Glasgow and also Giffnock CS decided to look for a new challenge and join the league.
With both season still currently paused and clubs waiting to see when we will get back to playing football. Finger crossed we can finish last season and start and complete the current season. Whenever we receive the green light to start playing again. It has been very frustrating for everyone connected at all levels of football that the game we love is currently paused.
The league is always looking to attract new club into the over 35s section so should any club wish to seek a new challenge for season 2021/2022 then please get in touch with the league via our website the link is included below.
Central Scottish AFL – League (leaguerepublic.com)
Photographs kindly provided by Central Scottish Over-35s Match Secretary Mr Chris Wilson.
Chris Wilson has revealed the sponsored Spark of Genius Central Scottish AFL have a constructive re-start plan in place – with options available – as the country heads towards the New Year. The top-table Administrator and Over-35 League Chief told me: “Tom, firstly can I apologise for the delay in getting this to you. The Attached Article had to be firstly approved by our Executive Committee prior to sending this to you. This is what we as a League have planned, and our clubs agreed to in order that our clubs get as good a shot at competitive football when we start back. By leaving all our options open, we think that it gives us a good platform to start playing when we are given the green light.”
Following the decision of the Scottish Government and Football authorities to suspend Amateur Football during March of this year and with the uncertainty that was to follow, the League Executive Committee held a series of consultative meetings with clubs in Membership to establish a way forward as and when permission would be given to restart, following a Special General Meeting and subsequently the Annual General Committee Meeting held in June of this year the following was agreed.
1. The Premier and 1st Division Championships, as and when permission is given to restart will commence, and when Champions have been decided and Promotion and Relegation has also been decided, the League Championships will be “Called” as finished.
2.The remaining two fixtures in the League Cup (Bunrigh Trophy) one Semi-Final and Final will be played on a date to be arranged by the Match Secretary.
3. All other competitions i.e. Cinema Cup, M&M Trophy and McEwan’s Challenge Trophy will be suspended and reviewed depending on the restart date.
4. Sectional Play -Offs to decide the League Division One Championship will be played on a date to be arranged by the Match Secretary.
Season 2020/2021 would run in tandem with Season 2019/20, with a re-aligned domestic cup programme. Planning began at an early stage with midweek games being played to complete last season, with the league covering the cost of grounds for the relevant midweek fixtures, Saturday’s would be set aside for a combination of Season 2019/2020 and 2020/2021 fixtures, the League also reduced League fees and paid the public liability insurance for clubs to assist them financially for the current season.
Clubs then began planning for the return to football within the new restrictions as laid down by the Scottish Government, Sport Scotland and the Scottish FA by completing E Learning Training Courses to ensure they complied with all the guidelines, and importantly Club Officials attaining the relevant Covid 19 Certification, which was a requirement in applying protocols that would be essential in allowing games to proceed.
When our league was given the green light we commenced competitive football with league games being played on Saturday 3rd October 2020 nearly two months later than the normal season start date, however with twenty games played across all competitions the league was forced to close down due to restrictions being reapplied.
It was decided recently by Clubs in Membership that season 2020/2021, when restrictions are removed or relaxed and football can restart, a shortened version of the league season will be played. It is sincerely hoped that by leaving all options open, member clubs will still have meaningful competitive football to play.