Bowhill boy making his Mark with Scotland

Mark McCormack, Bowhill Rovers defender, in Slovenia with Scotland Amateurs.
Mark McCormack, Bowhill Rovers defender, in Slovenia with Scotland Amateurs.
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An amateur footballer from Cardenden has helped the national team qualify for a prestigious international tournament.

Mark McCormack (26), was part of the Scottish Amateurs squad that travelled to Slovenia for the UEFA Regions Cup qualifiers last month.

The centre-half impressed selectors with his performances for Bowhill Rovers in the Kingdom Caledonian League, and he played his part as the Scots made it through their group to qualify for the finals in Slovakia later this year.

The Scots did it the hard way though as a draw with San Marino followed by a 2-1 defeat to Greece meant they had to beat Slovenia by two goals in their final match to qualify.

However, a 3-1 victory, coupled with a draw in the other game, meant the Scots progressed to the finals.

Mark, nicknamed Corrie, told the Press: “We were the better team over the three games and we deserved to go through.

“I’ve never seen a team spirit like it. All the boys were brilliant and we were a solid team.

“We’d been preparing for it for a year and a half but you’d think we’d all played together for four years.”

Mark, a spray-painter with Arnold Clark Kia in Kirkcaldy, he has been inundated with messages of support from the Fife amateur football community.

“It’s been all over Twitter,” said the former Lochgelly High School pupil. “Everyone is pleased for me being the only one from Fife in the squad.

“Bowhill are over the moon for me as well, and it also helps to put the club on the map.

“We’ve had a great season, winning three trophies in Fife and we’ve still got two more finals to come.

“We also got to the last 16 of the Scottish before getting knocked out by last year’s winners.

“The whole club has come on leaps and bounds.”

Mark has already committed to Bowhill next season, turning down offers from junior clubs in order to keep his amateur status - and his place in the Scotland squad.

He is now looking forward to taking part in the UEFA Regions Cup in September where the Scots will face hosts Slovakia, England and much-fancied Germany.

“It’s the biggest amateur competition in the world so it will be great to be part of it,” Mark said.

“It’s run by UEFA and you’re looked after like a professional. The standard is so high I’m sure some of the guys could do a job in the SPL.

“The Germans are supposed to be something else, but we’re the best amateur players in Scotland so we’ve got a good team as well.

“We’ll go and give it our best shot.”