Business Fives Professional Services Heat sees accountancy firm overcome engineers in the final
Business Fives Professional services heat, supported by the Edinburgh Chamber of Commerce, took place on Thursday August 11th. The standard of football was ramped up as 13 companies battled it out for 4 places in the grand final at Lesser Hampden.
With generous donations flowing in for the Trussell Trust, Jim Robertson, Scotland Partnership Coordinator shared success stories about the fantastic work the charity supports throughout Scotland in changing the lives of those who have fell on hard times.
The group stages saw teams from a range of sectors battle it out for an automatic spot in the quarter finals with Harley Haddow, Anderson Strathern and AMCO Rail all winning their groups with convincing 100% records.
Anderson Strathern’s Gary Burton was an early marker for the top scorer charts, netting 9 times in victories over sportscotland, the Rutland hotel, and Geoghegans. The Rutland Hotel could feel hard done by for not registering a point in 3 narrow defeats with Colm McGurk proving a driving force from midfield.
In the other side of the draw, AMCO Rail picked up hard fought victories against BT, Grant Thornton and Murray Capital. Grant Thornton’s Stevie Mahon looked a class apart for his side who were full of confidence after claiming national victory in their companywide five-a-side competition.
With the remaining 5 teams all battling it out, Haines Watts showed early promise picking up 8-2 and 4-1 victories against Weber Shandwick and G & V before being stopped in their tracks by Shepherd + Wedderburn who fought for a 2 nil victory over the accountancy firm through goals from Thomas Macfarlane. G & V overcame Weber Shandwick with playmaker Kieran Smith pulling the strings in a 3-1 win.
As the group stage drew to an end Grant Thornton, sportscotland, Shepherd + Wedderburn, Haines Watts and Geoghegans came out victorious, securing their quarter final spots.
With teams playing for best placed position in their groups it was eventually Grant Thornton, sportscotland, Shepherd + Wedderburn, Haines Watts and Geoghegans who came through the playoffs to join the group winners in the quarter final spots.
The quarter finals showed the emergence of real contenders for the title of Professional Services Champions 2016 and Geoghegans came through a very close encounter marred with controversy against AMCO Rail who were disappointed not to reach the semi-finals. Anderson Strathern steamrolled passed Haines Watts 9 – 0 and Harley Haddow once again beat Shepherd + Wedderburn to defend their place. Their opponents were decided in the tie of the round which seen Grant Thornton beat sportscotland 6-3 – relive the action here.
Both semi-finals were hotly contested affairs with winning margins capped at just one goal. James Watt from Harley Haddow continued his goal scoring form helping his side to a 5-4 victory in a very tight encounter against the side from Grant Thornton.
In the other semi-final Stevie Manson contributed to 5 of his side’s 6 goals as Geoghegans beat Anderson Strathern with the last kick of the game in a 6-5 victory.
The final was played in good spirits between engineering consultants Harley Haddow and accountancy firm Geoghegans. Keith Mellis was pick of the goals with a wonderful volley that found the top corner 2 minutes into the final. Geoghegans got themselves back into it and couldn’t hold on to a 2-1 lead with the game eventually being decided on sudden death penalties.
James Watt from Harley Haddow narrowly missed out on the top scorer accolade which accountant, Steven Manson from Geoghegans picked up with an impressive 13 goal haul.
With all four semi-finalists progressing to Hampden, Anderson Strathern and Grant Thornton should be pleased with their teams’ effort. However, it was Geoghegans who enjoyed the celebrations on the day as they picked up the professional services trophy from Business Fives Ambassadors Pat Stanton and Scott Crabbe.
The tournament was again raising funds for the Trussell Trust and is heading West for a regional heat in Glasgow on August 18th before returning to Edinburgh with a Technology & IT heat on August 25th ahead of the national final at Lesser Hampden on September 1st.