Gary Heatly reviews Sunday’s Cricket Scotland Men’s T20 Scottish Cup finals day…
Carlton put in a professional display in the Cricket Scotland Men’s T20 Scottish Cup final on Sunday evening to defeat ion8 Forfarshire and lift the trophy at Arbroath’s Lochlands ground.
Bowling first in the final between the two Eastern Premier Division sides packed with quality, Carlton got off to the perfect start when spinner Rory Allardice had Forfs dangerman Craig Wallace caught off the first ball of the match by Ali Shah.
Captain Ali Evans then bowled Rory Johnston with just the eighth ball of the innings and when spinner Angus Beattie bowled Michael Leask with the contest just 13 balls old it was all Carlton at that stage.
Forfs had some rebuilding to do from 2-3 and Callum Garden and Aman Bailwal did just that, progressing the score to 66 before Bailwal was bowled by Beattie for 29 off 31 balls.
The very next ball Beattie bowled Forfs skipper Scott Cameron and the champions from this event in 2019 were 66-5 as the end of the 12th over approached.
Fair play to Jack Hogarth who came in and made 20 off 21 balls batting at number seven for Forfs, but there was no let up from the Carlton bowlers and the innings ended when Glenn Carnegie was bowled by Evans after 19.3 overs with the score on 103.
Beattie starred with 4-15 while Scotland man Evans was almost unplayable with 3-5 and Shujaa Khan and Allardice were also in the wickets.
In reply needing 104 to win, Carlton lost Tom Simpson for a duck from the final ball of the first over.
He was trying to pull Cameron, but picked out Wallace in the deep.
Arun Pillai and Hugo Southwell, the former Scotland rugby internationalist, are two experienced players and calm heads and they came together at the wicket for the Edinburgh side.
They put on 34 for the second wicket before the latter was bowled for 21 by leg spinner Hogarth to give Forfs renewed hope.
After 10 overs, Carlton were on 44-2 and needed a further 60 runs from 60 balls to win.
Spinner Leask had Pillai caught in the deep by Wallace for 18 off the first ball of the 12th over to put Carlton 47-3 before a six from Khan helped the batting team’s cause later in the same over.
Khan and Shah then put on a 35-run partnership for the fourth wicket before the former was caught by Bailwal off the bowling of Hogarth for an important 24.
Fraser Burnett joined Shah and they saw their team home after 18.2 overs by six wickets, Shah on 28 not out and Burnett on eight not out at the end for the worthy champions,
Earlier on in finals day, in the first semi-final which began at 10.30am, Carlton took on M8 Driving Ferguslie.
Batting first, Simpson and Pillai put together a brilliant 114-run partnership for Carlton opening up. That gave their side a cracking foundation to build on and eventually they posted 161-5 from their 20 overs.
Simpson made 80 from 57 balls before he was run out, Pillai 42 from 39 balls and then Burnett chipped in with 14 not out in the last few overs.
Daoud Tahir was the pick of the Ferguslie bowlers with 3-33 while Taimoor Ahmad took 1-26.
In reply, David Stafford set off like a train for the men from Paisley and he hit 29 from 20 balls before he was caught by Burnett off the bowling of Ruaridh McIntyre.
Ferguslie captain Riyaad Henry top scored with 34, but his side kept losing wickets at inopportune moments and although Haroon Tahir and Uzair Ahmad ended up on 17 and 19 not out respectively, they finished on 134-6 to lose by 27-runs.
McIntyre and Beattie both took two wickets apiece for Carlton with Allardice and Evans also chipping in.
In the second semi-final tie at 1.45pm, Forfarshire played against Gala.
Gala were always going to be the underdogs, but batting first they really battled hard and managed to get themselves up and over the 100 mark to give them something to bowl at.
Key to the batting effort of 104-6 were 24 apiece from Duncan Millar and Jamie Crooks while Jack Halls was undefeated on 10 at the end.
Graeme Black took 2-15 from his four overs for the Forfs with Leask and Fergus Duncan also taking wickets.
In Forfs reply, Robbie Irvine got the prize wicket of Wallace, but 50 not out from just 23 balls from Leask and 23 not out from 14 balls from Bailwal saw them to their victory target of 105 after 10.4 overs.
Well done to champions Carlton and thanks to Arbroath CC for hosting such a great day.
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