Domestic Review - Week 12
Cricket Media review the weekend's action in the Eastern and Western Premier Divisions.
Craig Wallace fired the season’s highest score as Eastern Premier challengers Forfarshire returned to action and form with a resounding win over Falkland at Forthill.
Anyone who witnessed Wallace scoring 33 in jig-time during Scotland’s recent ODI with Afghanistan is well aware of his formidable capabilities.
Yesterday he demonstrated them all in spectacular style to carry his bat for a superb 176no as Forfarshire posted 327-3 – just six short of their own best team total of the campaign.
Wallace had excellent support from Ryan Watson who hit 48 while Rory Johnston added a rapid 45.
In reply Falkland’s entire team mustered two runs fewer than Wallace had managed on his own, Umair Mohammed taking 3-12.
Forfarshire are still firmly in contention but Watsonians remain the team to beat after surviving a fright to overcome Stoneywood-Dyce at Myreside.
The visitors were looking for their first win of the campaign and may have thought it was coming when they dismissed the leaders for just 124.
It would have been worse for ‘Sonians without skipper Ewan Chalmers who top-scored with a fighting 46 to give his bowlers something to work with.
Hopes of a maiden victory for the Aberdonians quickly subsided as they slumped to 30-6 before being all out for 60 with overseas duo Andy McKay and Martin Versfeld claiming three wickets each.
Grange produced a stirring fightback to rekindle their fading hopes of a successful title defence and perhaps end Arbroath’s dream of a late surge to glory.
Batting first at Portgower Place, the champions recovered from 69-7, Calvin Burnett claiming four wickets, to make 205 thanks to a half-century from Harris Aslam.
Aslam then claimed three Arbroath scalps though was upstaged by his captain Andrew Brock who had 4-23 as Grange cruised to a 65-run win.
At nearby Goldenacre Heriot’s secured a six-wicket win over Aberdeenshire, though the Edinburgh side’s success owed much to former Dons’ stars Adrian Neill and Hayes van der Berg, the former taking four wickets before the latter hit an unbeaten 46.
Elsewhere, the match between Glenrothes and Carlton was abandoned without a ball bowled.
IN the west, champions Clydesdale were frustrated for the third week in a row when their match at Drumpellier fell to the weather.
However, hopes of retaining their crown were enhanced when leaders Ferguslie lost for the second consecutive week, Uddingston running out winners by 26 runs at Meikleriggs.
The improving Lanarkshire side, having opted to bat first, showed impressive resolve to post 193-7, based on a solid century opening stand.
Anwar Hafeez led the way with a beautifully controlled 88 while Amir Gul hit 38, the visitors being denied a bigger total by the spin-twins of Hamza Tahir and Mishkal Ramsaroop who had three wickets each.
Hafeez completed a fine all-round display with 3-27 as Uddy’s bowlers claimed wickets at crucial stages to retain the initiative, the Paisley side falling to 167 all out, 35 from Michael English being the best they had to offer.
Elsewhere, Kelburne never recovered from a disastrous start as East Kilbride staked their claim for third place with an easy win at Torrance House.
The visitors slumped to 15-5, losing all five wickets for just four runs during twenty-one deliveries of mayhem that saw Stewart Kampman snap-up three wickets and Umair Khan two.
A stand of 69 between Omer Hussain (29) and Stevie McLister (42) allowed Kelburne to salvage pride but Umair Saeed joined the attack to match Kampman’s three-wicket haul and send the Paisley men hurtling to 107 all out.
Moneeb Iqbal led EK’s reply with a hard-hitting 56no including four boundaries and four maximums to seal a seven-wicket success.
Michael Papps continued his extraordinary run-spree with a fourth century of the campaign.
The former New Zealand international stroked a brilliant unbeaten 148 as Ayr posted 248-3 at The Tryst to set up a 115-run win over Stenhousemuir.
Dumfries ended their recent losing sequence with a two-wicket win over Prestwick at Nunholm.