A 1-0 victory at New Central Park was hard-earned to make sure ICT started their Premier Sports activities Cup marketing campaign with three factors forward of Tuesday’s journey to Premiership hosts Livingston, who received 3-2 at Albion Rovers.
George Oakley, who performed for the Inverness aspect from 2017-2019, has been to Hamilton, OFC Pirin Blagoevgrad in Bulgaria, Kilmarnock and Woking since then.
Competitors for Caley Thistle jerseys was as scorching because the sunshine in Kelty on Saturday – and that was simply what head coach Billy Dodds wished.
However final week, the highly effective Englishman signed a two-year deal to come back ‘dwelling’, whereas former ICT youth star, winger Daniel Mackay made a shock mortgage return to Inverness on Friday on a season-long mortgage from Hibernian.
They joined new summer time recruits defenders Max Ram and Zach Delaney and wingers Steven Boyd and Nathan Shaw in signing for the Championship membership.
All six featured during Saturday’s 1-0 win towards League 2 champions Kelty, but it surely was Oakley who had the ultimate say together with his ice-cool end within the searing Fife warmth.
Centre half Ram was solely on the pitch for quarter-hour when a thigh pull noticed him changed by spectacular Delaney, whose first act was to clear an Alfredo Agyeman effort off the goal-line.
Midfield dynamo Roddy MacGregor was the closest for ICT to opening the scoring within the first 45 minutes, however his low drive flashed simply broad after Delaney teed him up.
Inverness keeper Mark Ridgers labored exhausting for this clear sheet, with a primary half save from Lewis Martin, simply signed from Dunfermline, adopted by second half stops to disclaim Thomas Reilly twice.
After that, ICT appeared to step it up and created one of the best of the remaining probabilities.
A protracted-ranger from Aaron Doran was fantastically tipped over by keeper Darren Jamieson simply earlier than Billy Mckay’s wonderful glancing header bounced off the submit.
Daniel Mackay, who changed Doran on 63 minutes, was not far off with a swerver from exterior the field then Billy Mckay had an effort cleared off the road when he related with a Cammy Harper nook.
With a shoot-out simply two minutes away, Billy Mckay turned the supplier when his move discovered Oakley, who raced via earlier than burying the ball previous Jamieson for the deciding aim.
Dodds believes the signing of Daniel Mackay, on mortgage from the membership he joined a yr in the past on a four-year deal, can revive the 21-year-old’s footballing fortunes.
However he’s additionally delighted to have high quality choices from again to entrance as they search to qualify for the knockouts for the primary time since 2016.