An Abernethy man has appeared in private at Perth Sheriff Court charged with an attempted murder on New Year's Day. Garry Chalmers (32), of Den Park, faces a charge that on January 1, at Gleneagles Road, Perth, he assaulted Nike McAnespie by striking him on the body with a knife to his severe injury and to the danger of his life and attempted to murder him. Appearing before Sheriff Lindsay Foulis on Wednesday, Chalmers made no plea or declaration and was committed for further examination. He was remanded in custody. Mr McAnespie is the brother of former Saints player Kieran McAnespie, who also played for Fulham and Falkirk before joining his current club, Arbroath.
Another week, another new Audi. Two new Audis, in fact. The German car maker has announced a couple more additions to its Q line up of SUVs. The Q4 is a coupe-SUV hybrid that will go up against the BMW X4 and Mercedes GLC Coupe. As its name suggests, it’ll be positioned between the compact Q3 and bigger Q5. At the other end of the scale is the Q8, which will go head to head against the Range Rover. It’s lower and sleeker than the Q7 Audi is also producing. In concept form, it sat only four people, although it seems likely the production version will be a five seater. There’s a 630 litre boot as well. Eagle eyed Audi followers will notice the only SUV slots left to fill are the Q1 and Q6. Watch this space...
Arbroath defender Kieran McAnespie has beaten Rangers before and he hasn't ruled out doing it again on Sunday. Back in 1999, the 32-year-old had just broken into the St Johnstone first team and played a starring role in the Perth side which defeated the Ibrox men 3-1 at McDiarmid Park. Unsurprisingly, it's a match he has no problems recollecting, even though it was well over a decade ago. He said: ''I set up two and scored the third. It was a great day and I remember it well. ''We had a right good team at the time with experienced pros like Alan Kernaghan, Jim Weir, Paul Kane and Allan Preston. Experience like that is like gold. That was the main reason we did so well. "I think we took nine points off the Old Firm that season and that was at a time when they were more feared. That's not the case these days. Teams believe they have a chance against them now.'' McAnespie's career took him to Fulham, Hearts and Falkirk, with a few other stops along the way. He could have been excused for thinking he'd played his last game against the Old Firm, so he's relishing the live Sky Sports match all the more. He said: ''I'm really excited about the Rangers match. It will be a massive day for the club and for the players especially those who have aspirations to play full-time football. ''I'm 32 now and I'm probably looking at life after football. I'm not saying that I wouldn't go full-time again but I'd have to weigh it up financially. At the moment I've got a job dealing with student loans and I'm enjoying it. ''The most important thing is that I'm loving my football again. We've got a lot of experience in the team and I'm probably not the only one who has won against the Old Firm. I know the gaffer has, and Brian Kerr might have as well. ''Of course it's a winnable match. Results have shown that we can leak goals but we're a good passing side and we've definitely got goals in us. The likes of Gavin Swankie, Steven Doris and our midfielders all have a good record. ''We love pushing forward. It's always been in my game to be a bit gung-ho but the manager has to put the brakes on me sometimes. ''A lot will obviously depend on Rangers and what team Ally McCoist puts out, but as long as we're brave on the ball, have belief in ourselves that we're good enough, then who knows where that will take us?'' McAnespie was a team-mate of manager Paul Sheerin in his second spell at Saints, and he admitted it was Sheerin's powers of persuasion that lured him to Gayfield. He said: ''I went up there because of the gaffer. He convinced me to come up for training and have a look at the set-up, even though I think he was looking for a centre-half at the time. ''At Saints, I was actually next to the gaffer in the dressing room and I think me and Dinky (Kevin Rutkiewicz) used to drive him demented!'' He added: ''Everybody loves coming to training, and that's something that comes from the gaffer. I think there are five of us who travel to Dundee and Perth for training from Glasgow, three from Fife, and a couple from Edinburgh. ''It's about an hour and 40 minutes to get up there from Glasgow but it sometimes feels like a week to get there and a week to get back! It's not something you'd do if there wasn't a great team spirit.''
Arbroath moved a step closer to lifting the third division trophy after coasting to victory against Clyde at Gayfield. The Lichties never moved out of second gear as an assured display saw them put the tie to bed in the first half, with two well-finished goals. Josh Falkingham had the first chance for the hosts on 10 minutes but ballooned his effort high over the bar. That was followed seconds later by an Adam Strachan shot for the home side that lacked the sting to trouble Bryn Halliwell. On 24 minutes Steven Doris opened the scoring, rolling home a neat cut-back from the lively Gavin Swankie. Clyde looked short of ideas in the final third and consistently pumped high balls into no-man's land behind the Arbroath back four. Doris could have had his second just after the half hour when a mazey run from Adam Strachan sent Swankie free to deliver the perfect ball. However the striker's point-blank header was well stopped. The resulting corner was badly cleared, allowing player manager Paul Sheerin to drill in a low effort that had Halliwell scrambling. A clash of heads between Clyde's Stuart Mills and Ian Gray let Swankie in for the second of the game, the hitman slotting coolly into the top corner. The hosts kept up the pressure after the break, Kieran McAnespie powering a header just over from a Swankie corner. Legs began to tire midway into the second period, with both outfits struggling to control the middle of the park. On 75 minutes the same training ground corner almost paid off again, this time McAnespie just failing to connect. Clyde sub Connor Stevenson had a chance to claw one back soon after, but his curler from 20 yards whistled wide. Falkingham then had a pop from a similar distance at the other end but Halliwell made a solid catch. Arbroath strolled through the remainder of the match and got a standing ovation from their fans, who appear to fully expect a league triumph. Sheerin said, "We were reasonably comfortable but two nil is a funny scoreline and if they go and sneak a goal then we could have become edgy. "It was always going to be important to win our game in hand because everyone around us is on the same games (played) and that now gives us a clearer picture. "So to be seven clear at this stage makes it a massive win for us. Hopefully we can stumble over and there is still a lot of football to play. "We just have to take care of business and although it is cliche we really must take every game as it comes." Arbroath host Queen's Park on Saturday and would clinch the title if they win and Annan lose at home to Berwick Rangers. Attendance 604Arbroath Hill, Sibanda, McAnespie, Wedderburn, Griffin, Strachan (Dimilta 86), Gibson, Falkingham, Paul Sheerin, Doris (McGowan 68), Swankie (Jordyn Sheerin 89). Subs not used-Burns, McManus.Clyde Halliwell, Brown (Girvan 52), McGowan, Scullion, Lithgow, Sweeney, Mills (Cochrane 61), Gramovic (Stevenson 68), Gray, Stewart, Sawyers. Subs not used-Allan, Park.Referee-Gary Hilland.
Montrose boss Steven Tweed refused to lay all the blame on his players after watching them being beaten 5-0 defeat by arch-rivals Arbroath. Instead, he had referee Des Roche in his sights after the whistler's performance provided most of the talking points in the clash with two sendings off, two penalties and seven bookings. Pivotal of the decisions was a red card for Montrose's Chris Hegarty in the 41st minute for a foul on Keith Gibson. Hegarty was walking before Roche reached for his book, but even if he had been lucky enough to be looking at a caution, his reaction in seeming to push away Roche guaranteed an early bath making it all the easier for Paul Sheerin's side. Roche flashed his first yellow to Montrose's Nicky Smith just five minutes in for a petulant reaction to a throw-in decision, and while early chances were at a premium another Montrose card followed for Stephen McNally after a charge on Keiran McAnespie. Arbroath's Josh Falkingham followed in 21 minutes with a yellow for a late challenge, and with Terry Masson booked for the hosts in 32 minutes it meant a clutch of cautions before Falkingham sneaked in to drill home a Ross Chisholm pass. Gavin Swankie's perseverance brought the Lichties' second, the striker picking himself up after his first shot was blocked before keeping possession to slot home past Sandy Wood. Falkingham bagged his second five minutes after the break with a cool finish from a perfectly-weighted McAnespie pass and the writing was clearly on the wall for Tweed's troops when they were reduced in numbers even further by Gordon Pope's second yellow in 55 minutes. A 66th minute Steven Doris cutback gave Swankie the easiest of finishes for his brace, and although he was denied a hat-trick by a Wood save from an 80th minute penalty, the demolition job was rounded off by an injury-time Doris spot-kick.PressureTweed said, "I think the referee put himself under pressure booking people when he didn't have to at times. "Discipline and individual errors have cost us the game, and with nine men it it hard work. "We've lost 5-0, Sandy Wood has made one real save and it's the penalty," he added. "I'm disappointed because I thought we were up for it, we started well and the shape was good. "I can't ask any more of the nine that stayed on the park, but the goals we are losing are criminal and we cannot expect to win games like that." Arbroath boss Paul Sheerin-booked for having words with Hegarty as the home player headed for the tunnel-agreed the turning point in the clash. "The sendings-off have a big bearing on it. I think they did have a bit of territorial advantage, but once we scored we were able to kick on," he said. Of the challenges facing the man in the middle, Sheerin added, "Derbies are occasions. Okay, it's not the Old Firm, but it's our biggest rivals and I think you have to use a bit of common sense. "For 20-25 minutes it's committed but that's part and parcel of derbies and you have to recognise that." He added, "For us though it's six games unbeaten in the league and that's a good run. "Our first quarter was poor, but no-one took advantage to stretch out and we've always been lucky enough to stay in touching distance. We're right back in the mix now," he added. Attendance 1034. Montrose Wood, Hegarty, Pope, Campbell, Crighton, Masson (Sinclair 60), McCord, McNalley, Cameron, Nicky Smith (Davidson 60), Boyle (Tosh 68). Subs not used Robbie, Thompson. Arbroath Hill, McMullan (Griffin 69), McAnespie, Gibson, Malcolm, Rattray, Falkingham (McGowan 73), Chisholm, Paul Sheerin (Dimilta 60), Doris, Swankie. Subs not used Burns, Jordyn Sheerin. Referee D Roache.
Arbroath will go eight points clear at the top of division three if they can put away Clyde at Broadwood tonight. The Lichties are coming off the back of an emphatic win over East Stirling at the weekend, which saw Paul Sheerin's men bag five goals in a game for the third time this season. With 63 goals, the Angus side have netted more than any other senior club in the country including both halves of the Old Firm. Despite a gulf of 40 points separating the two, Sheerin has primed his troops to treat the game as they would any other. "It is a massive game for us because we are the only team from the sides at the top of the league that are playing, and it is a real opportunity to build a decent lead. To pick up another three points would give us that extra gap, so it is important we are ready." Arbroath will be without Allan Rattray, Stuart Malcolm and Kieran McAnespie for the trip. Clyde held second-placed Albion Rovers to a draw on Saturday, and boss Jim Duffy is hoping his men use that as inspiration as they look to start putting pressure on the teams who have sat above them for nearly six months now. Duffy said, "I was really pleased with how the boys battled at the weekend, and if we do that again against Arbroath I am sure we will do well. It may well be the leading team visiting us, but it is a game I am looking forward to. "We showed a bit of resilience in our performance at Coatbridge, and hopefully we can build on that against Arbroath." Clyde are missing wide-man Kevin Finlayson, who is suspended, and Duffy's options are reduced as Alan Lithgow, Ally Park, Paul McMullan and Gavin Brown remain out with injury and Neil McGowan is a doubt.
While many athletes will be focusing on Glasgow and the Commonwealth Games this year, when it comes to achieving sporting success one talented Fife teenager is already looking further ahead. Kieran Steer, from Crossgates, is fully focused on being among the medal winners at the 2016 Paralympic Games in Rio in two years’ time and backed up his Brazil intentions with another outstanding international performance in the sport of boccia. The 18-year-old was among the 2,000 international students who travelled to the fourth and largest Paralympic Schools Championships in Brazil at the turn of the year and took part in a full range of Paralympic sports, although Kieran came out with a gold medal in the BC4 class at boccia beating off competition from 117 other competitors. And the Fife youngster hopes it will not be his last taste of gold in Brazil as he targets more medals when the Paralympics take place in 2016. “Competing at the Paralimpiadas Escolares in Brazil was a fantastic opportunity and was very different to anything I have done before,” Kieran said. “Being so far from home, experiencing a different culture and competing against the best international players was a great experience that I’m sure will help me develop my future career.” Boccia is an indoor court game played by the most severely disabled performance athletes within the disability sports programme. The game was initially played by power and manual wheelchair users who have cerebral palsy but in recent years it has been opened up to players with other impairments, similar to cerebral palsy in functional ability, having an impact on a player’s four limbs and trunk. Kieran competes in the classification for players with muscular dystrophy, severe spinal injuries or the equivalent, and the young west Fife athlete has challenged and on occasions defeated some of the country’s leading BC4 players. And following his performances in Brazil, national and local coaches hope Kieran’s latest success will prove to be a defining moment in the young man’s career. Kieran started his campaign on day one in the pool matches with a more than convincing 20-0 win, although on day two he came up against fellow Scot Jamie McCowan in his opening pool match and lost out narrowly 3-1. However, the two Scots progressed to the semi-finals where Kieran defeated the South American junior champion 5-3 with a brilliant final winning ball and Jamie overcame his Brazilian opponent by 13-0. The all Scottish/British BC4 final was staged on day four of the competition with Kieran dominating the opening exchanges, racing into an early lead which he held throughout. The young Fife player eventually lifted the title by the winning margin of 9-3.
A young firefighter credits the Territorial Army with improving his performance in his “day job”. Kieran Hughes signed up in 2007 and he says the skills he’s learned have helped him in his work at Coupar Angus fire station. The 23-year-old from Blairgowrie was handed responsibility for carrying out crucial home fire safety visits two years ago. He said: “I started off as a firefighter in the station in November 2009. The crew managers there were always busy with community fire safety, so I did a lot of the home visits to help out. “I got more and more involved and it got to the point where the watch manager said I could take over the department.” The former Blairgowrie High School pupil was asked to hit an annual target of almost 200 visits and reached it in just six months. He said: “We were well behind when I took over in August 2011 and they were a bit apprehensive, because we have to meet our target. “I reached it by halfway through February. I got two other firefighters to help me and we just got into a rhythm. It was good. “And we’re already well ahead of our target for this year, which is rare. We’ve done 32 since the start of April.” Fire stations across the country are expected to carry out home visits to provide safety tips and ensure householders have working smoke alarms. Kieran said: “Quite often people think they have a working smoke alarm but when we ask when they last checked it they don’t know and some of the smoke detectors don’t work at all. “But it’s not just about fitting smoke alarms. It’s about saving lives and making the community a safer place.” Kieran, who is also a qualified mechanic, says the skills he learned in the TA are proving invaluable. “I think when you come from a uniformed service, like the military, it’s a lot easier to take it into another uniformed service. “When I see any crew manager or watch manager I always call them sir or ma’am. Often they tell me to call them by their first name, but they’ve reached a rank for a reason. The least you can do is acknowledge their rank. It’s about respect. “I’m always on time. I’m professional. I’ll stay an extra 15 or 20 minutes to make sure everything is done. All the paperwork is always done, so if a crew manager or watch manager comes in, they don’t have to chase it up. “I always ask if anything else needs done, rather than just doing your work and hiding somewhere, which takes the workload off their back.” Kieran’s watch manager Kevin McKay said: “Keiran has taken the lead role in arranging and conducting home fire safety visits within Coupar Angus’s station area. “His job with the TA allows him the flexibility to be available during the daytime, when we are required to deliver community safety and home visits, while other crew members have work commitments. “He brings knowledge from experiences in the TA, which is useful to the service. The TA put him through HGV driving, which allows him to drive the fire appliance. “They have taught him to work as part of a team and he has also been brought into the service showing good discipline.” Kieran is now hoping to advance his career on two fronts. “I’m aiming to become a lance corporal in the TA this year and I also look forward to furthering my career in the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service,” he added.
St Johnstone got their pre-season programme off to a winning start at Gayfield, with goals from Liam Craig and Kevin Moon securing the victory. They will now set off on their trip to the Republic of Ireland tomorrow in good heart after being given a decent test by second division newcomers Arbroath. Craig set the ball rolling just a minute after the break, then Moon finished things off in the final minute of the friendly. Manager Derek McInnes said, "This was our first game proper of the summer and there is always a lot of rustiness. That was the case tonight and mistakes were made but Arbroath gave us a very competitive match. "This is where the football begins and we have three weeks now to work towards being ready for the first SPL game of the season against Aberdeen." Home player-boss Paul Sheerin seemed satisfied with his team's efforts. He said, "I have been delighted with the fitness of the players and they have been a credit to themselves, although it is early days yet. "We played well in spells and had a few chances so I couldn't ask any more of the lads."TrialistsSaints included a couple of trialists in their starting line-up, one a Serbian striker and the other a winger. The Lichties fielded seven ex-St Johnstone players in their side Mark Baxter, Kieran McAnespie, Stewart Malcolm, Steven Doris, Gavin Swankie, Josh Falkingham and Sheerin himself. The match took a while to warm up and it was the 20th minute before Saints threatened, with Dave MacKay's cross headed goalwards by Carl Finnigan, only for the offside flag to go up. Up at the other end, Swankie went on a mazy run then had his strike saved well by Perth keeper Peter Enckelman. Moon brought the game to life on 28 minutes, cracking a shot off the Lichties' bar after playing a one-two with the trialist striker. Arbroath hit back again, though, with Steven Doris having a snap shot from eight yards out well saved by Enckelman, then seeing another low strike more easily gathered by the big Finn.ChangesBoth sides made a couple of changes at the break. The hosts brought on Keith Gibson and Joe Prince-Wright for Baxter and Brian Kerr, while the visitors gave runouts to Stevie May and Sean Higgins, with the trialist winger and Finnigan coming off. The McDiarmid men took just a minute of the second period to take the lead, with a move started by Higgins, helped along by May then finished by Craig, who dinked the ball over keeper Darren Hill and into the net from 10 yards. The Lichties then brought on Lee Bryce for Doris, Jordan Elfverson for Swankie and Craig Wedderburn for Malcolm, while Saints swapped one trialist striker for another, Murray Davidson for Chris Millar and Callum Davidson for Alan Maybury, who is set to sign a new deal with the club. With 66 minutes gone, player-boss Sheerin came close to levelling when his rocket shot from 25 yards had to be pushed away by Enckelman, then Falkingham and McAnespie tried their luck from long range, both going close. It was Saints who had the last word, though, with a superb deep cross from sub Paul Caddis side-footed home by Moon at the far post in the 90th minute.Attendance: 750 (est).Arbroath: Hill, Baxter (Prince-Wright 46), McAnespie, Falkingham (Sibanda 76), Malcolm (Wedderburn 65), Busch, Finlayson, Kerr (Gibson 46), Doris (Bryce 53), Swankie (Elfverson 65), Sheerin. Subs not used: Burns.St Johnstone: Enckelman, MacKay (Caddis 77), C Davidson (Maybury 67), McCracken, Wright, Trialist (May 46), Millar (M Davidson 67), Moon, Craig, Trialist (Trialist 67), Finnigan (Higgins 46). Subs not used: Clark, Rodgers, Moffat, Reynolds, McIntosh.Referee: Frank McDermott.
A full report into the shooting of a man as he walked through an Army checkpoint in Northern Ireland will not be released, the Irish government has confirmed on the 30th anniversary of his death.Disclosing the entire content of the Crowley inquiry into the killing of Aidan McAnespie even three decades on would be a breach of trust with local community members who gave information, Irish Justice Minister Charlie Flanagan said.Mr McAnespie was killed in Aughnacloy, Co Tyrone, in February 1988.The 23-year-old had been on his way to a local Gaelic Athletic Association club when he was shot by a Grenadier Guardsman.A Government-approved summary of the report, headed by then Deputy Garda Commissioner Eugene Crowley, was given to the McAnespie family in 2002.But the full report cannot be released because those who co-operated with the 1988 inquiry were guaranteed confidentiality, Mr Flanagan said. In a statement to the Seanad he said: “Because of fears that many people in the local community expressed to him (Mr Crowley) as to their safety and security, they co-operated only and explicitly on the basis of an assurance of absolute confidentiality and that what they related to Deputy Commissioner Crowley was for the government only.“This report was submitted to the Minister for Justice in April 1988. To release the full content of the Crowley Report even at this stage 30 years later would be a breach of trust of the Irish government to those parties.”He acknowledged that his statement would “inevitably be a disappointment to Aidan McAnespie’s family who suffer from his tragic loss to this very day”.But he added: “The fact is that I must have full regard to the expectations of the many people who contributed in good faith to the Crowley inquiry on the basis of a guarantee of absolute confidentiality and to the persisting obligation in that regard.”The soldier who shot Mr McAnespie had claimed his hands were wet and his finger slipped on the trigger of his heavy machine gun.The guardsman was initially charged with manslaughter but the charge was later dropped.The Public Prosecution Service in Northern Ireland announced in 2016 it would review a decision not to prosecute the soldier.A PPS spokeswoman said: “This review has now entered the final stages of consideration and the PPS will be in contact with family representatives in the coming weeks once a definitive time frame for decision is confirmed.”