Scottish Cup Round Up

22 Jul

From Cricket Media

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Aberdeenshire’s bid to complete a weekend double over Grange ended in disappointment last night as they crashed out of the Scottish Cup at Portgower Place. 

Despite a superb century from Harsha Singh, ‘Shire just fell short in what was a valiant run-chase. 

Tyler Buchan’s side had gone into this quarter-final clash buoyed by Saturday’s easy eight-wicket win on Saturday when they dismissed the Edinburgh giants for just 96.

However, in the wake of that victory Buchan recalled – almost prophetically as it proved – that he has been on the receiving end of the Grange batsmen when they have scored totals in excess of 300.

The Edinburgh side didn’t quite make that many but their 271-8 proved enough despite Cooray’s heroics – the Mannofield men falling 10 runs short. 

Grange were clearly desperate to make amends for their sub-standard performance twenty-four hours earlier and home skipper Neil McCallum’s decision to bat first was a clear statement of intent. 

So was the way George Munsey and Ryan Flannigan set about their task, the pair putting on 60 in the first nine overs. 

Munsey went on to make 34 but a constant stream of Grange batsmen made their mark with Ian Worth (40no), Josh Edwards (37) and Andrew Brock (33no) ensuring a sizeable total. 

However, it was the contribution of former Stoneywood-Dyce all-rounder Gordon Goudie that proved decisive.

The Saltires man, batting at No7, top-scored for the hosts with a typically hard-hitting 59 that featured four boundaries and two beautifully struck sixes.

Chasing such a big total, Shire clearly needed a solid start but they lost a wicket in the first over and soon their innings was threatening to fall apart. 

Kenny Reid was run out by Goudie’s sharp fielding and, when Graeme Tomlinson edged one behind, the visitors were in deep trouble on 16-3. 

Player-coach Neil MacRae and overseas professional Cooray effected partial repairs with the Sri Lankan playing the lead role. 

However, they had added 46 when MacRae was adjudged lbw to his former Scotland team-mate Gregor Maiden. 

Daya Singh helped keep ‘Shire on course with a robust 69 but the rate had increased to nine-an-over going into the last ten and Singh departed soon after. 

Callum Martin played his part with 30 while Cooray’s continued presence meant there was still a chance. 

However, with 24 runs required from the last two overs, that man Goudie returned to haunt ‘Shire and Buchan in particular. 

Goudie conceded just one run in his final set of six deliveries while dismissing Aberdeenshire’s captain first ball. 

Cooray also perished in the desperate pursuit of runs, the Sri Lankan departing for 115 with eleven fours and one maximum as 23 runs from the last over proved too big an ask.   

Arbroath were still on course for a Scottish Cup and Premiership double last night after they wasted no time in bouncing back to peak form. 

Their confidence had taken a jolt with Saturday's league defeat by Watsonians, but they regrouped instantly to clinically snuff out the challenge of Stoneywood-Dyce at People's Park to book a place in the semi-finals of the knock-out tournament. 

On a track that was lively to say the least, Arbroath recovered from a jittery start to dominate the remainder of the contest - outplaying the hosts in every department of the game.

And it was young Scotland ace Calvin Burnett and veteran seamer Benny McGill who emerged as the destroyers-in-chief.

Arbroath will now square up to Grange at Raeburn Place in the last-four and will travel to Edinburgh with plenty self-belief, having won easily there in the Premiership early in the campaign. 

Burnett underlined his all-rounder credentials by thumping 92 to guide Arbroath to 239 all out. 

He was stoutly supported by Darren Spink, who hit 62 to show the selectors they might have been wrong to leave him out of the ill-fated Sonians tussle. 

McGill then hogged the limelight with a well-merited four wicket haul, sending the Aberdonians sliding to a miserable 122 all out in the process. 

Arbroath spokesman Gary Burnett said: "Conditions were awkward at the start with the wicket offering inconsistent bounce.

"One delivery would rear up off a length and the next would scuttle along the deck. 

"It did settle down a bit, but there was still some erratic behaviour by the ball." 

Grange and Aberdeenshire were caught up in a close encounter at Raeburn Place - the capital men grabbing immediate revenge for their league loss to the same opponents 24 hours earlier. 

Gordon Goudie proved a handful for his former club, top scoring for Grange with 59 not out as they made 271 for eight.

A ton by pro Harsha Cooray kept the Dons in the hunt, with Deya Singh helping him add 125 in a tense stand. 

But tight bowling by Goudie ensured a 10-run success for Grange. 

Elsewhere, Safyaan Sharif sent a timely reminder in the direction of national squad chiefs by hitting a superb century to set up Clydesdale's triumph over Ferguslie at Meikleriggs. 

But in terms of big hits, his unbeaten 111 was second best to Zeeshan Bashir, who whacked a quick fire 51 to propel his side to 220 for seven.

Sharif's ton came up in 127 balls and featured nine fours and a six.

He said: "It was definitely my best innings since moving to the club.

"I feel ready and fit after my injury problems and I am just waiting for my chance to get back in the Scotland squad." 

After Sharif's heroics, it was down to Majid Haq to finish the job by taking five for 23 as his old side were skittles for 90. 

New Eastern Premiership leaders Carlton were too strong for Drumpellier. 

Former holders Heriot's were in ruthless mood as they ended the aspirations of First Division (West) pacesetters East Kilbride in the consolation SCU Trophy.

Old stager Steve Knox was the man who mattered, cruising to 108 to complete the nine-wicket romp.

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