STRATHEARN Grove have been crowned champions of division three in the Perthshire Amateur FA league.
The team had an anxious wait to find out, though, as the top spot depended on rivals Glenfarg losing to Methven, which they did by three goals to two on Saturday.
The management team of Alan Hendry, Dave Webster and Keith McAlister said they were pleased with the Grove’s performance this season.
Assistant manager Dave Webster told the Herald: “We could have started off better. We had a couple of dodgy results early on but then had a good time up to Christmas before losing three games in a row in February but we picked it up again and things went our way in other games.
“Six teams had the chance of going up and with four games left we had to win all four to win the league.
“We lost to Kinrossie on a night when we were the better side but knew we would get promoted if we won the last three games and just had to hope other results went our way. Methven did us a big favour by winning on Saturday, which was unexpected.
“The Grove have played really well this season. We have had the strongest defence in the league.
“We didn’t score as many goals as other teams but defence has been solid from Mark Fyfe, Graham Walker, Graeme Walker and Graham Duncan.
“Fyfe has virtually been there every game, as has captain Graeme Walker, ensuring consistency. Stuart Young came into goal at the end of the season, freeing up Ali Grant to make a major contribution outfield, including the winning goal at Star of Athol.
“We have also had a strong midfield with Barry Ward, Fraser Deacon, Gary McGlashan, Shaun McNaughton and Ross Walker and up front goals from David Young, Brian McLean, Shaun Ward, Dave McKay and Stevie Davidson have all contributed.
“Squad players like Andy Welsh, Lee Jack and Cameron McAlister have also boosted the team.”
Manager Alan Hendry added: “Promotion has been a long time coming over the past few years but worth it and we are all looking ahead to life in the second division.”