North East cricket got some unwanted publicity as the Press and Journal provided a report on the police being called to the Bon Accord v Master Blasters match at Links. 2 men were issued with recorded police warnings. No doubt both clubs will have their hands full compiling disciplinary reports.
Grampian moved up to 3rd place in Grade 1 after beating Knight Riders at Groats Road. Mynul Nadim was the only Grampian batter to go past 16, but he did go all the way to 110 in their total of 219. Prasanth Malireddy and Bijin Vijayaraj shared 6 of the wickets, but the chase proved beyond their batters as Mahmud Rahman delivered a 4 for 36 haul to bowl out the champions for 195.
Cults produced the surprise of the day as they won at Mannofield by 4 wickets. 78 from Rizwan Tahir was the highlight as Mannofield were all out for a below par 184 as Ubaid Ullah starred on the bowling front with 6 for 40. Ullah also contributed 31 with the bat but it was 73 from Saqib Ali that led Cults to the win with 7 balls to spare.
Inverurie struggled to get runs on the scoreboard at Countesswells on Saturday. Trevor Norval carried his bat for 68 but they only set a score of 126 for 4 for Gordonians to chase. A quick 35 from Mohit Khosla gave the hosts a boost as they won by 6 wickets.
Having got through week 1 and the whole of the 2022 season without being dismissed, it was a shocker for Dave Gibson as he succumbed to a first baller from Muhammad Hassaan, although 3 others had already departed to the AberGreen bowler as Crescent were all out for 135. Gibson took out both openers as AberGreen slipped to 110 all out, although they have to be complimented for giving 4 lbws against themselves, a rarity in Grade 1.
On the cricketing front, Master Blasters beat Bon Accord by 5 wickets.
In Grade 2 it was a non-event for Portcullis and 2nd AberGreen as they turned up to Duthie Park to find no pitch prepared. Grade 2 had been expected to produce a lot of close matches this season, but other than the Methlick v Huntly match, the remaining games on Saturday had clear winners.
Ellon would have been a bit disappointed to be all out for 90 at Fraserburgh, and it would have been even grimmer if Brian Veldsman hadn’t impressed with 44 before he was lbw to Hasmatullah Niazai who took 3 for 29. The Fraserburgh reply was done and dusted within 15 overs as they were swiftly bowled out for 22. It’s not often a bowler takes 5 for 15 and has the worst bowling figures in their team, but Ben Webb was overshadowed by fellow opening bowler Richard Greenfield returning 5 for 7.
Chasing 302 for 4 is always going to be challenging, Sam Rotheram again the man in form with 90 of those for Banchory. Will George posted another half century and Mausam Thapa rounded off the pain for 2nd Knight Riders with an unbeaten 53. 2nd Knight Riders were all out for 168 with Mark Herbert taking 4 for 41.
Another Alex Keith half century set AGSFPs on the way to 192 for 3 at Rubislaw against 2nd Grampian. Skipper Agha Haider was 88 not out as they recovered from a position of 10 for 2. The 2nd Grampian innings was in trouble from the start as they lost a wicket in the first over. The slide continued as Rob Swiergon made up for his duck with the bat to take 5 for 10 to help bowl their opponents out for 41.
Inverurie was the place to be if you wanted a nail biter. The Huntly batters struggled against the experience of the Methlick bowling attack and their innings was somewhat rescued by an unbeaten 15 from number 11 Munish Tandon to take them to 100. Chasing this should have been a fairly routine day at the crease for Methlick, but Terry McGuire took 3 for 11 to give Huntly hope. Enter Methlick skipper Tim Duffy to make a vital 17, 2 more than his entire run tally in the league last season to help them to a 2 wicket win.
2nd Methlick will have been happy to have bowled out 2nd Master Blasters for 167, John Moore picking up 6 for 34 on debut. Mohammed Khan with 53 had top scored for 2nd Master Blasters. Ross Moir was the only 2nd Methlick batter to make double figures with 29 as Aravind Kolapalli with 3 for 7 wrapped up a 93 run victory for 2nd Master Blasters.
Siv Gollakota, determined to prove he is still the best player in his family, top scored for 2nd Gordonians with 86 of their 264 for 8 against Stonehaven. He then followed up with 4 wickets to restrict Stonehaven to 177 for 6, Andy Gale another to carry his bat for an unbeaten 63 to max out the batting points.
The Lloyd Belton effect continues to work wonders for Crathie as he added a half century to his recent century to help Crathie to 234 for 7. He then took 3 cheap wickets to seal a 98 run win over a youthful 2nd Mannofield, for whom the slightly more matured Phil Wood knocked a 50.
Bala Balaji picked up 3 for 10 for Dunecht as they bowled out Stoneywood Dyce for 83. Bala also top scored with 19, but 60 for 4 turned in to 76 all out as Gihan Perera and Joe Slater also took 3 wickets each to pluck victory from the jaws of defeat.
It was a good day in the SPCU North East Championship for Huntly, but Aberdeenshire and Gordonians were on the wrong side of unexpectedly poor results.
25 extras led the way for Shire, followed by 16 from Kenny Reid as nobody else scored more than 4. They were skittled by Arbroath for 54, Jared Meiring taking 4 for 18, Marc Petrie being the only wicket to fall for 29 as Arbroath raced to victory in 11 overs. Whilst it was a short day for the umpires, they did get to enjoy a feast fit for a king, queen and a rather large family.
Gordonians had never lost to Kinloch before, but they managed it on Saturday. Kinloch were on the way out on 95 for 7 but Shakeel Shafi and Shazad Ahmed weren’t your average 8 and 9 as they made 42 apiece to take Kinloch to 202 for 8. Gordonians have always enjoyed batting at Forfar, but despite a welcome return to form from Aman Arora with 45, they only managed 12 boundaries as they were restricted to 188 for 9 in reply.
A good knock from Connor Langlands helped 2nd Falkland to 68 for 1, but when he was the first victim for Jack Mitchell on 37, the collapse well and truly set in. Mitchell took 6 for 20 to dismiss the visitors for 90, and 16.1 overs later they were back in the cars for the long drive back to Falkland having only taken 2 wickets as Elijah Ward-Armstrong spanked a 6 to win and keep Huntly at the top of the league.
Perth Doocot are also unbeaten as the Safyaan Sharif show shot them to a heavy win over Freuchie. Sharif made a rapid 56 to help Perth to 239 for 7 and he then took 7 for 19 to bowl out Freuchie for 126. Joel Rush continued his run scoring form for Perth with another half century.
Strathmore looked in the driving seat as they removed 2nd Forfarshire for 128 at Forthill, but with Lewis James getting Lance Trueman out for a duck, it was a steady procession of befuddled Strathie batters as 2nd Forfs managed a remarkable 60 run win.
53 for 6 isn’t an unusual position for Stoneywood Dyce to find themselves in, but Andrew Maclaren gave them something to bowl at as he batted out the remainder of the 50 overs with a resolute 41 to take them to 162 for 8. The SDCC left arm opening bowlers of Jon Grant and Abdullah Khalid are proving a difficult proposition for the Eastern Premier League top orders, and they had Stewart’s Melville in early trouble at 36 for 3. Steven Parker and Riyaad Henry then put on a century partnership that guided Stew Mel to a 5 wicket win.
Watsonian have quality in their side but they are rooted to the bottom of the table with no points after a 10 wicket drubbing by Heriot’s. Adrian Neill ripped through the Watsonian batting with 6 for 17 and Matt Cross and Lloyd Brown both made unbeaten 48s.
Grange were bowled out by Carlton for 220 but another Chris Greaves bowling masterclass of 4 for 21 killed off Carlton for 73. Falkland took the points at home to Meigle, bowling out the visitors for 175 largely made up of 70 from pro Raju Gayashan. Jack Henderson made the same score for Falkland who won by 4 wickets. RH Corstorphine lost by 4 wickets to Forfarshire who chased down 125 with Michael Leask making a quick half century.
It’s a long road to Gala for a Scottish Cup game, but the drive back must have been easier for Aberdeenshire as they won a relatively low scoring match by 42 on a DLS calculation. Alex Cummings with 4 for 22 turned the match in favour of Shire.
Rain caused the abandonment of the Scottish Cup tie between Stoneywood Dyce and Arbroath United leading to a nerve wracking bowl off. A 3 each draw was eventually broken in sudden death in favour of Arbroath.
The only Grades cup tie to survive on Sunday saw 2nd Master Blasters cruise to a 114 run win over Crathie, although a player eligibility issue is being looked at.
The Northern Lights had scorched along to 110 for 1 against Grange Women when the match was abandoned.