Reivers beat Highlanders to win 50 over series
Reivers 187/9 (50 overs) Haq 62*, MacLeod 27, Sharif 22, Routray 4/32, Goudie 2/53 beat Highlanders 181 all out (46.4 overs)Mommsen 37, Parker 26, Sharif 3/33, MacLeod 3/31 by 6 runs
The Highlanders and the Reivers met each other in the LiveSport.co.uk Pro Series at the Grange in Edinburgh with the visitors knowing that a win would see them clinch the 2013 50 over series.
After winning the toss and electing to field the Reivers got off to a terrible start - Chris Bellwood edged a Gordon Goudie delivery to Preston Mommsen at slip. The ball was moving about off the pitch early on and when Richie Berrington nicked a rising delivery to Craig Wallace behind the stumps the Reivers were 22/2 in the 6th over as Goudie pouched his second wicket.
MacLeod started scoring freely with two elegant boundaries through the covers and back down the ground. Iqbal appeared to be run out with a direct hit, but the umpire thought otherwise. It wasn’t to cost the Highlanders though as Iqbal edged Calvin Burnett to Mommsen at slip to complete his second catch with the score showing 37/3 in the 11th over.
Things got worse for the Reivers as Kasim Farid was clean bowled by Raj Routray with a delivery that moved in off the seam in the 16th over. Routray had another when Josh Edwards drove the ball into the hands of Goudie at cover.
MacLeod was understandably disappointed to depart after having looked to have negotiated a difficult spell, but the Scotland batsman offered the catch to point and departed for 27.
Haq came to the crease and looked calm as he looked to revive the innings flicking his first boundary through mid-wicket to move the score onto 71/5 in the 20th over.
Sharif and Haq saw the Reivers total reach 100 before drinks were taken. Sharif then showed intent hitting over the top of cover as the pair put on a 50 run partnership. An accurate throw from Mommsen at mid-off accounted for Sharif after he had made 22.
Haq took a liking to the bowling of Leask hitting him for a straight six down the ground as the Reivers reached 145 in the 43rd over. He moved to his 50 in the 48th over, coming from 99 balls, and continued to find the boundary with regularity as the innings came to a close.
The final over included the run-out of Neil Smith and then the last ball off the innings went for four to conclude the Reivers 50 overs on 187/9. Routray claimed 4/32 from 9 overs while Haq finished unbeaten on 62*.
The Highlanders got off to a confident start than their opponents as Hamish Gardiner flicked the ball to the fine-leg bondary in the 3rd over. Michael Leask then found the rope hooking a full toss before he was undone by a yorker from Peter Lojczszyk for 20.
Gardiner was then brilliantly caught by a diving Calum MacLeod in the covers, before Mommsen was joined by Parker the pair then steadied the innings. Parker found the boundary through the on-side as the score moved to 63/2 in the 15th over.
More jubilation came for the Reivers after Parker was stumped coming down the wicket to Haq for 22. Wallace made 10 before a huge appeal by the Reivers saw the umpire raise the finger much to the delight of the visitors.
Farrell drove Bellwood through the covers to the boundary moving the Highlanders to 124/4 and seemingly cruising, nudging the ball around and coupled with sensible running between the wickets.
Things started to go horribly wrong for the Highlanders when an excellent catch by Neil Smith standing up to the stumps dismissed captain Mommsen for 32 off the bowling of MacLeod.
The very next over Henry Edwards played down the wrong line and had his off-stump disturbed to have the home team 6 wickets down with still 45 runs to get.
Goudie came to the crease and found the boundary with a big shot over mid-off to go move the Highlanders score past 150 with 10 overs remaining.
Another boundary followed although the very next ball MacLeod got his revenge enticing a leading edge to Sharif who completed the catch.
Burnett had a bit of luck when a big leg-before appeal was turned down, and he made the most of the opportunity with a four down to third man following it up with another boundary straight down the ground.
Majid Haq then produced a moment of magic to put the game back into the balance; his diving effort at mid-on resulted in the dismissal of the Arbroath all-rounder with 17 runs still required and 2 wickets remaining.
Nerves were jangling for both sides as Brock and Farrell took the runs required down to 10 before a moment of madness saw Brock run out from a good one handed pick up by Iqbal to remove the bails.
Routray and Farrell scampered another 3 runs before Farrell found the hands of Haq at mid-on to give the delighted Reivers the win by 6 runs and seal the 2013 LiveSport.co.uk Pro 50 Series.
Majid Haq was awarded Man of the Match with a couple of important catches and his unbeaten 62.