Aside from the fact that we pride ourselves on our warm Highland welcome to all visiting clubs, the similarities between our home towns are remarkable.
Girvan Football Club are fondly called The Seasiders, because, well, Girvan is a coastal town. Much like Brora it was originally a fishing village until the arrival of the railway opened up new industrial and tourism opportunites.
The town’s coat of arms, along with the football club’s crest, bear the motto ‘Weave Industry with Truth’. A nod to the importance of the textile industry in the past, not dissimilar to the importance the Mill held at one time in Brora.
As if those similarities weren’t enough for the visitors, consider the fact that we both boast a distillery on our doorsteps. Without wishing to sound too competitive before a ball is even kicked, we suggest that our own Clynelish is kinder to the palate than William Grant & Son’s grain whisky … though if any Seasiders care to introduce the Cattachs to some of Ailsa Bay’s first bottling, some thoughtful consideration is sure to be given.
Harbours, railways, the textile industry and now whisky - surely enough for two towns drawn together by chance. Except we’ve also got golf.
The famous Trump Turnburry lies 5 short miles from Girvan’s football ground. Again, not wishing to sound too competitve ahead of the referee signalling kick off at 3pm on Saturday, our internationally acclaimed golf course is significantly closer … and we’d argue, better.
Whilst this, along with our claim to the better whisky, can be nothing more than spurious, pre-match posturing not unlike the build up to the recent Mayweather v McGregor bout, what really matters is which team can play the better football on the day.
Neither of us are expecting an afternoon of glory at Hampden next year, but the Scottish Cup is a fantastic competition to be involved in.
For the supporters it brings the promise of new venues to visit, new teams to watch, new friends to be made and the glory of an exhilarating Cup run. For the squad and the Club, it is all of the above plus a real chance to measure ourselves against opposition from outwith our own League and an opportunity to let our Club Treasurers sleep a little bit easier at night.
Idle boasts about golf courses and whisky aside, we are looking forward to welcoming all involved with Girvan FC to our little corner of Scotland and sharing the excitement of the Scottish Cup.