CSL Western Premier preview - week 3
From Cricket Media
An innovation in this season’s re-styled Western Union CS Premier division has been the introduction of MVP (Most Valuable Player) statistics –a system devised by the Professional Cricketers Association several years ago.
It is most widely used to rate the all-round contribution of the superstars who grace the Indian Premier League but its application in the more modest surroundings of the Scottish domestic game makes for interesting reading.
According to the early results, the Western Union’s most valuable player is Clydesdale’s Con de Lange who has already contributed 97 runs and ten wickets to help his team set the early pace.
Just behind in second place is Pat Druce of Dumfries who leads the wicket-taking charts with twelve victims in the first three matches of the campaign.
The pair will come face-to-face when both will have the chance to influence the day’s top game at Titwood.
However, there is sufficient talent in both teams to suggest that others could have the major bearing on the outcome.
Certainly Colin Mitchell, Clydesdale’s chairman of cricket, has highlighted a different threat in the visiting ranks.
As manager of the Reivers, Mitchell has seen at first-hand the qualities of the Australian-born all-rounder Scott Beveridge, arguably one of the few genuine successes in the ranks during the inaugural North Sea Pro Series.
Mitchell said: “Scott has performed as well as anyone for the Reivers and is a danger in the middle order!
“But Dumfries are a well organised unit with a good balanced attack. We know this will be a testing encounter and it won't be taken lightly.”
The hosts, who have several injury concerns, are definitely without Zeeshan Bashir.
Dumfries are in high spirits after recovering from their opening day loss at East Kilbride to record big wins over Drumpellier and West of Scotland.
The latter are yet to register their first win and will be wary of today’s visitors to Hamilton Crescent, the in-form Renfrew who are unbeaten and could go top should Clydesdale slip-up.
Renfrew skipper Sai Majeed said: “We are confident with our form to date and especially considering neither the pro or overseas amateur have had major contributions.
“West have not had a great start but our games against them are always very close so we will give them every respect regardless of their position in the league at this early stage.
“They will be a dangerous bowling outfit whereas we are bit more balanced in both departments.”
Bowled out for just 70 at Dumfries a week ago, it is clear where West’s problems lie but their batting will be boosted by the return of Gregg Watson, Stuart Murray and Ross Brown.
Renfrew replace Adil Hussain with Steven Black.
Reigning champions Uddingston will attempt to get their title defence back on track by winning their local derby with Drumpellier at Langloan.
The Bothwell side came a poor second to Clydesdale last week and skipper Bryan Clarke, who welcomes back Nick Martin and Ricky Bawa, has called on his side to raise their game to last year’s high standards.
East Kilbride are another team bidding to bounce back from defeat but they may struggle to end Ayr’s unbeaten run at Torrance House.
The visitors scored heavily in their defeat of Drumpellier a week ago and skipper Andi McElnea said: “We are full of confidence and looking forward to the challenge of a tricky fixture.
“EK are a dangerous team so we are well aware how hard it will be to maintain our unbeaten run.
Neil Logan and Matthew McClymont return in place of Dougie Johnstone and Adam Gilbert.