All smiles for southsiders

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After a difficult yet fruitful season, the hard work has only just begun for seven Clydesdale Western stars.

Last week, the girls were crowned champions of the Women’s National League Division 1 after a dramatic 4-3 win over Dundee side Grove Menzieshill.

Their win also secured their place in European competition next season.

Now, for the winning team’s standout performers, it is time focus their efforts on this summer’s Commonwealth Games.

Ali Howie, Amy Gibson, Catriona Ralph, Holly Cram, Morag McLellan, Nicola Skratsin and Susan McGilveray will benefit from part of a £90,000 award.

The cash injection will allow the women to train full time till the Games in July.

It’s all part of the sportscotland athlete personal awards which will support athletes in 17 different sports which have been identified as potential medal winners.

Scotland vice-captain Catriona Ralph said: “This award gives the team the best opportunity to perform at our very best at the games.

“In allowing us to train full-time, and the provision of first-class support services through sportscotland, we are able to focus entirely on our hockey and on representing Scotland as best we can.”

Speaking at the Glasgow National Hockey Centre, where the awards were announced, director of High Performance at sportscotland Mike Whittingham believes the award will have a clear benefit.

He said: “SAPAs help ensure that Scottish athletes have the time to be fully focussed and concentrate on important areas such as recovery and injury prevention.

“It is challenging to achieve success on the word stage and meticulous preparation is an essential ingredient.

“The Games are just round the corner.

“Athletes are approaching the home straight knowing they have the support of their governing bodies.

“They also have world-class support from the sportscotland institute of sport’s team of coaches, scientists, and experts.”

Also at Titwood this week, TPSL Team Sports Clydesdale were the winners of the u18 boys Scottish Club Cup competitions at the Glasgow national hockey centre, defeating Perthshire 6-1.

Murray Collins was the star of the day, scoring four goals and a goal each for Chris McFadden and John Joe Lonergan gave the southside outfit a comfortable win in the 
end.

Clydesdale Western were the winners of the u18 Girls Scottish Club Plate after a 3-1 win over Inverleith.

Goals from Alice Sherwood, Frances Lonergan and Julie Lonergan ensured the win.

Meanwhile, Scotland’s U16 and U18 hockey squads will play three international tests against Ireland next weekend at Dundee International Sports Centre.