Arbroath 2013 CSL Champions
From Copy: Willie Dick, Photos Donald MacLeod
Arbroath were last night crowned the champion club side in Scotland after a comprehensive CSL Grand Final triumph against Uddingston at Hamilton Crescent.
Held over from Saturday following Friday’s deluge, ball dominated bat from start to finish of a game which, in truth, failed to live up to expectation as the showpiece occasion of the domestic season.
Not that anyone in the Arbroath camp was complaining after the Angus side chased down their target of just 82 runs in 14.1 overs.
“This caps a marvellous season for us,” said skipper Marc Petrie after knocking off the winning run.
“We have played as a team throughout the season and again today we had contributions throughout the side.
“It was definitely a good toss to win to stick them in on a wicket which was doing plenty but we still had to do the job and we went about it in the right manner.”
Arbroath quickly seized control with club legend Benny McGill, in his final senior game, and Alvin Pollard offering little for the batsmen to hit.
Pollard struck twice to remove Derek Allan and Gautham Rai, the former trapped lbw before everyone inside the famous old Partick venue could only marvel at the champagne moment that accounted for Rai.
The ball sped from an outside edge and appeared to be heading for a lucky boundary until Petrie, displaying the reflexes and athleticism that a few years ago saw him touted as Scotland’s next long-term wicket-keeper, pulled off a spectacular diving catch.
Petrie may have fallen off the radar as far as national selection is concerned but Messrs Murphy, Wallace and Cross should be aware that they have another able rival for the Scotland gloves.
Petrie confirmed that with another excellent effort to give McGill the prized scalp of Uddingston’s Sri Lankan professional Ras Priyadarshana.
At 20-3, the Bothwell team were in deep trouble and they never recovered.
It didn’t help that Gavin Main was run out for a duck nor that Aamir Gul, having battled his way to 13, got an unplayable delivery from Brendan Ford.
Ford went on to claim 3-18 while Uddingston skipper Bryan Clarke dug in for 48 deliveries to post his side’s top score of 18.
There were also two landmark wickets for left-arm spinner Craig Ramsay, taking his season’s tally to 50.
This had been billed the “friendly final” in some quarters but Uddingston’s Vasu Reddy took the sentiment too far when he dropped Ford before Arbroath had got off the mark in their reply.
Batting, though, was still far from easy and Priydarshana claimed three wickets as the Bothwell side went down fighting.
There was also one for the veteran left-arm spinner Mark Townson who dismissed Calvin Burnett but Burnett’s brother Fraser had the decisive say with two sixes and one boundary in his 18-ball 22 which propelled the Lochlands men to their target with six wickets in hand.
Petrie also reserved special praise for McGill whose final ball in top flight cricket may have been struck for a boundary by Clarke but who has been a major part in the Angus club’s rise to the dizzy heights of CSL champions.
“This is a really fitting way for Benny to bow out,” said a proud skipper.
“He has had a great career and this season he has had to bowl through the pain in the club’s cause.
“It’s a fantastic outcome for Benny and the club.”