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Stew Mel hope to build on dramatic win

Gary Heatly takes a look ahead to week six of action in the Eastern Premier League for 2022

Cricket Scotland @CricketScotland
June 3, 2022 3 weeks
Stew Mel hope to build on dramatic win

Stewart’s Melville batter Michael Miller was delighted with the battling qualities the side showed to defeat Carlton last time out in the Eastern Premier League.

Now he wants them to take those qualities on the road to People’s Park when they play Stoneywood Dyce in week six on Saturday.

Some tight bowling, led by openers Neel Tandel (3-26) and Vish Shah (2-34), helped bowl the Grange Loan men out for 148 at Inverleith in week five of league action.

The reply was going reasonably well for the hosts until Carlton skipper for the day Ally Evans removed his opposite number Steven Parker and Tandel in the 40th over.

It left Miller, the 25-year-old former Scotland age grade cap, as the senior batter out in the middle and he and Soyeb Khanusiya managed to take things from 115-5 to 144.

However, Khanusiya, Shah and Greg Ruthven all fell with five runs still needed to win.

“It was getting a bit nervy out there by that point, I won’t lie,” ex-Stewart’s Melville College and Aberden University student Miller, who now works in finance, said.

“There were two overs left at that point to get the runs together and I just tried to talk to [last man] Connor Shorten and try to keep him calm.

“In the penultimate over there was a wide, then a single took me off strike and Connor saw out the remaining three balls.

“I managed to hit the first ball of the final over [from Umair Mohammed] for four which gave us the win that we wanted and also helped me to reach my half century.

“It was a great feeling for us to hold on and win because in the last couple of years at times we have lost games from positive positions while we always know that Carlton will fight until the end in any game.

“We have to take confidence from the way we closed out the victory in week one against Watsonians and from this win and take it into the rest of the season.

“Stoneywood Dyce have been going well and we know how good they can be at home, so this Saturday will be a test for us, but we are looking forward to it.”

After beating Falkland in round one, Stewart’s Melville also have a big Scottish Cup round two match coming up on Sunday at Gen!us Grange.

They have a bit more squad depth this year to cope with such double headers and Miller adds:  “Having [professional] Shaylen Pillay back at the club and Neel [Tandel, the overseas amateur] this summer is great because the young players coming through at the club can really learn from them.

“As a group we have a really good team spirit and there are a few senior players who try to lead things. We are enjoying our cricket and playing for the club together.” 

Stewart’s Melville are seventh in the table heading into their trip to Aberdeen while Stoneywood Dyce, after their own tight win at Watsonians last time out, are flying high in second spot.

Shaun Coetzer, David Kidd and Fraser McLean come into their XI for this one.

At Forthill, there is a big game as third placed Forfarshire take on leaders Heriot’s.

Forfs, for whom Christian Robertson scored an amazing unbeaten century in week five, are unchanged for this one while Heriot’s have Callum Martin, Michael Shean, Mark Watt, Scott Rarity and James Hickman joining their XI.

After their impressive win over Heriot’s in week five, RH Corstorphine are in fourth place and have an Edinburgh derby with sixth placed Carlton to look forward to at Grange Loan.

RH Corstorphine are unchanged while Carlton have skipper Tom Simpson, Shujaa Khan, Fraser Burnett, Rory Allardice, Neville Madziva, Ali Shah and  Ruari Macpherson all coming into the side.

There is an important game at the bottom end of the table at Scroggie Park where ninth placed Falkland host eighth placed Watsonians.

Both sides have had tricky starts this summer, but on Thursday evening Oli Hairs lit up Myreside for Watsonians when the Scotland cap made 134 off just 47 balls in a Masterton T20 win over Edinburgh. The innings included 10 fours and 14 sixes.

Bottom side Arbroath host fifth placed Grange.

Blair Carnegie, Matthew Hurst , Matthew Parker, Chris Robb and Ross McLean all return to the Arbroath XI.

Both sides had wins in their respective regional T20 events in midweek.

Arbroath skipper Bryce Carnegie making 73 not out as they edged past Strathmore on Tuesday evening in the Caledonia Cup.

And then Angus Brown hitting 75 off 39 balls on Thursday evening to lead Grange to a comfortable Masterton Trophy triumph over Edinburgh Accies.

Saturday, June 4’s fixtures:

Forfarshire v Heriot’s (Forthill)

Carlton v RH Corstorphine (Grange Loan)

Stoneywood Dyce v Stewart’s Melville (People’s Park)

Falkland v Watsonians (Scroggie Park)

Arbroath v Gen!us Grange (Lochlands)

Stewart’s Melville’s Michael Miller is pictured by the club/Bert Barclay

The Cricket Scotland Podcast will include a round-up of the men’s and women’s regional, premier league and cup action from across the country every Tuesday, with player interviews from our featured games. Follow @ScotlandPod on Twitter for all the latest information.

And if you or your club has a story for us, please email Jake Perry at jakeperrycricket@gmail.com or Gary Heatly at gary@gh-media.co.uk – we look forward to hearing from you!

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