Memorable chapter in Hawick history

Ryan Stevenson of Hawick Royal Albert, in blue, challenges Darren Lavery of Berwick Rangers (picture by Stuart Cobley)
Ryan Stevenson of Hawick Royal Albert, in blue, challenges Darren Lavery of Berwick Rangers (picture by Stuart Cobley)

It’s back to the main priority of Lowland League business this Saturday for history-making Hawick Royal Albert.

The southerners will be heading up to Elgin next month as the reward for knocking out the SPFL’s Berwick Rangers in the Scottish Cup.

It’s the first time ever in their near 70-year history that the Albert have reached round three of the competition.

That’s an achievement to cherish forever. But, for the time being, manager Dean Shanks and his squad are concentrating on the “bread and butter” of the league, with a visit this weekend to Spartans.

Shanks knows as well as anyone it’s a really special time for the town and a marvellous accomplishment by the players.

“It’s a fantastic achievement and it’s been down to a lot of hard work in the last 12 months by the management team, the committee and, most importantly, by the players, to reach their potential,” he said.

“They are a very humble bunch of players, wanting to improve and better themselves. I have never known a side with such good team spirit.

“Nobody gave us a chance on Saturday. But, within the changing room, we knew if we we played well, we would have a wee chance. We knew it would be tough but we managed to execute a game plan.”

The November 26-27 game at Elgin would be “a fantastic day for the town and everybody in Hawick”.

Meantime, he added, everyone had to “keep tabs on their expectations”, and the principal focus was on staying in the Lowland League.

See match report on p77