Citylets Scottish Cup - Clydesdale to meet Arbroath in Final
Holders Arbroath are through to the final of the Scottish Cup after a thrilling last-over win against luckless Carlton at Grange Loan.
The Lochlands men had to dig deep in both innings and no more so than going into the final over when Carlton needed ten runs for victory with four wickets in hand.
However, in a dramatic finale, Arbroath spinner Ross McLean held his nerve as all four wickets fell for the addition of just one more run.
Three of them fell to McLean who completed a match-winning five-wicket haul while the other was a run-out as panic set-in among the Carlton tail-enders.
Batting first, Arbroath made a solid start only to lose their way as they slipped from 45-0 to 84-4 as Calum Everett claimed three wickets in quick succession including Brendon Ford for 57.
Arbroath’s predicament intensified when Jack Waller departed for a pugnacious 46 to be followed by skipper Marc Petrie as the holders wobbled on 131-6.
However, Petrie has consistently lauded his team’s batting depth and that strength became evident as Calvin Burnett and Harris Carnegie added 69 for the seventh wicket.
Carnegie eventually fell for a fighting 20 but former Saltires star Burnett guided the innings to its conclusion with a well-crafted 63no as Arbroath posted 233-8.
Carlton appeared to be cruising on 139-4, Arun Pilai having led the way with 46, when Fraser Watts, going well on 53, was unluckily run out at the non-striker’s end.
A sixth wicket stand of 80 between Mario Olivier (31) and Ali Evans (46) kept the capital team on course until that late flurry of wickets sent Arbroath through.
The Angus side will meet Clydesdale in next month’s final after the Titwood troops came through a hard-fought tussle with Western Premier rivals Ferguslie at Meikleriggs.
Chasing a modest 148 after Majid Haq’s three wickets had helped restrict the Paisley side, Clydesdale were struggling on 60-5 until Scotland star Richie Berrington stroked 61.
However, when Berrington became Hamza Tahir’s third victim, Dale still needed 37 runs with four wickets in hand and they edged their way to the target to win by three wickets.
Earlier, Michael English held the Ferguslie innings together with an unbeaten 87 in a total which might have been greater than 147 had a couple of close calls gone their way.