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Super fan looks back on unique Scottish Cup journey

Thursday, 25 May 2017


This weekend sees the showpiece match of the Scottish football calendar take place with Celtic and Aberdeen clashing as the country watches on.

 

Football fan Gary Purves experienced the magic of the Final back in 2012 when his beloved Hearts lifted the Scottish Cup against Hibernian, creating one of the best moments of his life.

 

Having visited all 42 football stadiums across Scotland, including the 18 Highland League grounds, Gary was in search of a new challenge this season.

 

He set the William Hill Scottish Cup in his sights and endeavoured to attend a game every round.

 

Covering more than 600 miles, Gary has gone from Turriff to Hampden, watching the following games:

 

Round 1: Turriff United 1-1 Bonnyrigg Rose
Round 2: Buckie Thistle 1-1 Gretna 2008
Round 3: Peterhead 0-1 Alloa
Round 4: Bonnyrigg 1-8 Hibernian
Round 5: St. Johnstone 0-1 Partick Thistle
Round 6: Aberdeen 1-0 Partick Thistle
Semi-Final: Hibernian 2-3 Aberdeen

 

Starting up north at The Haughs for the first round, Purves witnessed a 1-1 draw at Turriff before journeying to Buckie and seeing them fight out a stalemate with Gretna 2008.

 

In the Third Round, he witnessed a strange moment involving a seagull.

 

He reflects: “At the Peterhead v Alloa game the Peterhead ‘keeper took a goal-kick and the ball went high into the sky, hitting a seagull.

 

“It came crashing down onto the pitch. The seagull was dazed and confused at first but thankfully it then flew off uninjured.

 

“Next up I went to Bonnyrigg Rose v Hibs because it was like a local derby with a big crowd and a friendly atmosphere – plus nine goals to enjoy!”

 

After witnessing Aberdeen progress to Hampden following a 1-0 win over Partick, Gary travelled to Hampden for their match against Hibernian where he was rewarded with the best game he’s witnessed thus far on his journey.

 

 

 

“There was a large crowd there and both sets of fans brought a lot of noise and colour. The pitch was immaculate and the sun was shining. There were five goals and the game was one where the pendulum swung from Aberdeen to Hibs and then back to Aberdeen again.

 

“I was literally still finding my seat when Rooney put Aberdeen ahead.”

 

On Saturday, Gary returns to Hampden and is eagerly anticipating a pulsating game.

 

“I am really looking forward to the final, although to be honest after the tragic events in Manchester this week it puts football into perspective.

 

“I am hoping for an entertaining game with a few goals, and although technically I am a neutral I will be cheering on Aberdeen as they are the underdog. However, if Celtic do win it will be nice to see them write a bit of history with an unbeaten season.”


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