Shetland Bridge Generation Gap Three Times

A record for Scottish competitive rugby was surely set on Shetland today. The island club's team included no fewer than three father-and-son pairings in the home match against Aboyne in the Scottish Hydro Electric Caledonia Regional Leagues Division 2 (North). Perhaps it's even a world record!

A record for Scottish competitive rugby was surely set on Shetland today. The island club’s team included no fewer than three father-and-son pairings in the home match against Aboyne in the Scottish Hydro Electric Caledonia Regional Leagues Division 2 (North). Perhaps it’s even a world record!

Stuart Jamieson and Martin Sidgwick were joined by their 16-year-old sons, Shane and Peter. The other pair, John and Matthew Nicolson, were no strangers to playing alongside each other for Shetland - the 19-year-old Matthew is now in his fourth season in the first XV.

”This is the first time we can remember this happening,” Shetland club chairman Ian Perry said.

“Even if it’s not a world record it must be a rarity in Scottish rugby, if not unique.”

But Shetland could not celebrate the occasion with victory. Aboyne won by 39-0.

As if three fathers and sons were not enough, Shetland may well have a fourth such pairing in the near future, when Paddy O'Connor and his 16-year-old son, Joe, come together in the first XV. Paddy was unavailable today because of business on the mainland.

Shane Jamieson, Peter Sidgwick and Joe O’Connor have come up in the first XV from Shetland’s growing youth section. The club now have 30 to 40 youngsters in the 16-18 age range playing regularly on Saturday mornings.

Of course, being at the farthest north limit of Scottish rugby, the boys have few opportunities to play against their peers in other clubs. However, their few games in a season are augmented by playing for Shetland Schools in the Bell Lawrie Scottish Schools Cup and subsidiary competitions.