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Scotland ready to host BB national finals

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The Home Nations Internationals, Victory Shield, Centenary Shield, Anglo-Scottish Cup… the list goes on. There has been no shortage of captivating football tournaments over the years involving club and national teams from throughout Great Britain. This Saturday Scotland will play host to one of the most historic and prestigious of them all.

The Boys Brigade Home Nations championship dates back several decades and has featured none other than Sir Alex Ferguson and Scotland manager Gordon Strachan as former participating players.

This year’s event is being hosted by the Boys Brigade’s Falkirk Battalion at Grangemouth Sports Centre on Saturday 30th April. After months of qualifying stretching the length and breadth of the United Kingdom, the big day is nearly upon us.

Competing is this year’s event are 1st Greenisland and 2nd Saintfield from Ireland. From England the two sides who have qualified are 2nd Tonbridge and 1st Hinckley. Last but not least the Scottish representation is dominated by Inverclyde, with 2nd Gourock and 1st Greenock the sides taking part.

Event organiser Paul Mitchell said: “There are various heats throughout the year, beginning in August, which culminates in a finals event.”

Mitchell expressed his gratitude to a number of individuals and organisations that have made the event possible. He commented: “Falkirk Football Club has given tremendous support to the competition. George Craig of Hibernian Football Club has also been full of guidance whenever required. Falkirk Council have embraced it and are going to put together a reception for everybody involved.

“We have also had financial assistance in the form of a grant from the CashBack for Communities programme. This has helped us make the event an experience that we hope none of the young players will forget.

“Being part of the Falkirk Batallion is a fantastic privilege, and we want people to come along and enjoy themselves. We want all of the players to go away, victory or defeat, saying that the event was a great one. That's the aim for us.”

If anyone had any doubt to how seriously the Boys Brigade take their football, Sir Alex is happy to put you right. In his recent book he spoke fondly about his memories: "When we went to camp in places like Stonehaven we were given a list of everything we had to bring with us, and at the bottom in big capital letters, he'd put 'and football boots'. As soon as we arrived, it would be 'right, everybody, get your football boots on’. When I visited my old BB coach not long ago, I found he had a miniature goal set up in his back garden and, in spite of being old enough to have survived years in a prison camp during the Second World War, he let me know it was not for decoration.”

The day starts at 12pm with first kick off at 1pm. The final presentation with take place at approximately 5pm, conducted by Alex Totten of Falkirk Football Club. Spectators are welcome. Fixtures for the day are as follows:

1st Hinckley V 2nd Saintfield 2nd Tonbridge V 1st Greenock 2nd Gourock V 1st Greenisland 2nd Saintfield V 2nd Tonbridge 1st Greenisland V 1st Hinckley 2nd Saintfield V 2nd Gourock 1st Greenock V 1st Greenisland 2nd Tonbridge V 2nd Gourock 1st Greenock V 1st Hinckley 1st Greenisland V 2nd Tonbridge 2nd Saintfield V 1st Greenock 2nd Gourock V 1st Hinckley 1st Greenisland V 2nd Saintfield 1st Hinckley V 2nd Tonbridge 2nd Gourock V 1st Greenock
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