STCC host Inverurie at Mineralwell Park for their first meeting of the season since Inverurie were promoted from Grade 3.
Following a gruelling defeat to Gordonians last week, STCC look to get back to winning ways! With only 10 men available to skipper R.Devlin of STCC, winning the toss and choosing to bowl first was the only option, considering the recent form of his middle order batsmen. A few quick wickets and solid fielding performance is required to give the home team any chance of winning or even competing today.
Strike bowler C.Findlay opens the bowling attack from the Hill End with a sharp start of consecutive maiden overs. With C.Findlay getting the bulk of the wickets last week, his strike partner C.Hinchcliffe must have something to prove in fear of a possible stretch in the 2nd XI to rediscover his form. Bowling on this perfectly flat wicket should give him the edge with his pronounced swing bowling. Needless to say, after 20 overs, C.Hinchcliffe has removed the top three batsmen and only given away 11 runs.
Inverurie standing at 35 for 3 from 20 overs is certainly worth smiling about, especially with only 10 men on the park! For only the first time this season, D.Wathern is brought on to try and keep the run-rate low along with 1st team regular J.Gouws. With the two of them keeping the scoring to a minimum, restricting the scoring to only 26 off the next 10 overs. As happy as the captain must be with the restricted run-rate, there has been no sign of any wickets falling with G.Coutts and S.Murrison keeping the ship steady currently for 17 overs. For only the second time this season, the skipper hands the ball to A.Gale hoping for something magical. After a couple of overs, in the scheme of things, were quite expensive amounting to 8 runs.
In his third, a mistake from S. Murrison pops one up to A.Prothero breaking the partnership of 47. With a lot of pressure from the field, more mistakes follow, leading to a few quick wickets for A.Gale, D.Wathern and C.Findlay.
The 7th wicket of the match falls in the 38th over for to C.Findlay to finish his 12 allotted with a wicket maiden. With a maximum of 8 overs left, a further 34 runs were added by J.Jessiman and R.Ewan. Regardless of their age, their skills shone through to place the ball in the gaps to bring their total to 114 for 7 from 46 overs.
Following the interval, regular openers, R.Devlin and D.Crozier take to the crease. As the clouds creap over and rain in the air, is this going to be the classic game of two halves? In only the third over, captain R.Devlin is dismissed for 5 runs following a rush of blood to change of bowler J.Jessiman. Lasting quite a few overs at the crease, but only adding another 5 runs to the scoreboard, A.Gale is dismissed also for 5 runs.
Joining D.Crozier at the crease is the oldest member of the squad, B.Campbell. In just the following over, D.Crozier and D.Wathern are dismissed for 21 and 0 respectively. The following over, J.Gouws is also dismissed, again by J.Jessiman for 0. All is not looking rosey for STCC being 5 down for 40 runs after just 17 overs.
A.Prothero helps steady the ship with B.Campbell sticking around for 8 overs before being bowled by R.Ewan for 8 runs. With B.Campbell looking steady in the middle, surely it will only be running out of overs that gets in the way of a victory for STCC, or will it be the lack of partners? Number 2 bowler, C.Hinchcliffe joins him at the wicket helping to bring the total to 114 before B.Campbell was trapped LBW while the scores were level for 37 runs.
With no more batsmen remaining, C.Findlay trundles to the crease with an immense amount of pressure on his shoulder, needing only 1 run to secure the victory. Facing just one ball, C.Findlay nudges the ball behind square for a quick single securing the victory for the home team.
After a very soggy afternoon in the rain, STCC manage to rise from the ashes of defeat last week and secure a victory with only 10 men. Hopefully things are on the up for the Thistle…..
Captains man of the match, B.Campbell for his fine display of batting skills, without which, the team would have become cannon fodder for the Inverurie Don’s.
Match ball sponsor – Connons of Stonehaven – Solicitors and Estate Agents