Awan, ah two, Awan, 2,3,4 tons in a row

No major changes at the top of Grade 1 as Mannofield, Bon Accord and Gordonians won at the weekend, the latter also knocking Mannofield out of the Aberdeenshire Cup as a last wicket stand took the tie to a nail biting finale. 

The Master Blasters title bid did however take a dent at the hands of Inverurie who batted first at Kellands. An opening partnership of 100 from George Hadden and Trevor Norval laid the platform (Norval out for 45 and Hadden later for 86) for Ritesh Kola to smack a quick 47 and post a challenging 284 for 7. Not such a solid start for Master Blasters as Jordan Thom took out both openers in his opening 2 overs, and a half century from Hariharan Mohan wasn’t enough to repair the damage as they were bowled out for 223.

Fazal Awan notched his 4th century in a row to take Bon Accord to 291 for 5 against Grampian at Harlaw. The scoreboard rattled over at a high rate at the start of the Grampian reply, but it didn’t last, and they were all out for 122 in the 23rd over.

Mannofield skipper Rahul Chandu got his pads on and was unbeaten on 60 as they made an impressive 285 for 5, Will Anderson top scoring with 82. Half centuries from Asif Yaqub and Muhammad Hassaan helped AberGreen to full batting points as they finished on 226 for 7. 

The Knight Riders resurgence continued as Vijay Amirtharaj took 5 for 27 to dismiss Cults for 133 in the 30th over. They lost 6 wickets in chasing the required total, taking until the last over when Uday Reddy finished matters with a 6.

Shubam Sharma batted throughout the Crescent innings against Gordonians at Links, rattling up 157 of their 253 for 7. Runs obviously didn’t flow quite so well at the other end, Harshad Parkar taking 4 for 39 to slow things down. The top 4 Gordos batters all got out in the 30s but it was steady as you go as they won by 5 wickets.

The much anticipated Gordonians v Mannofield tie in the Aberdeenshire Cup lived up to expectations in terms of drama as Chamila Perera had 2 lbw appeals upheld in the first over of the Mannofield innings. Chandu topped the scoring with a patient 29 as they were bowled out for 111 in the 34th over. Arnav Saraswat picked up 2 quick wickets to reduce Gordos to 9 for 3, and that was the queue for Ashfaq Bashir to buckle down and manage the Gordos innings as wickets fell regularly at the other end. The nail biting began in earnest at 106 for 9, but Bashir saw Gordos through to the semi finals.

Knight Riders are also through to the Aberdeenshire Cup semi finals as 74 for 1 became 153 all out for Inverurie, Sivaganesan Palaniappan taking 4 for 11. Jordan Thom picked up 3 lbws as Knight Riders looked in a bit of bother at 92 for 6, but the experienced duo of Palaniappan and Uday Reddy took them to victory.

In Grade 2 Karan Anand registered the first century (109 not out) at Inverdee as AGSFPs piled up 256 for 4 against 2nd AberGreen, Alex Keith making 73. Rob Swiergon took 3 for 20 as he tries to make a claim for all rounder status to bowl out 2nd AberGreen for 156.

The 33rd over of the 2nd Knight Riders will live long in the memory of the Portcullis players as Ronnie Falconer was brought on to bowl, taking a wicket 2nd ball before being hit out of the attack with 2 maximums. 2nd Knight Riders made 208 for 8 and in reply Portcullis lost 5 wickets, but will rue not hitting the accelerator button somewhat earlier as they ran out of time on 196, Owen Thorpe 61 not out, and Falconer not getting the opportunity to achieve super hero status with the bat.

The remaining 3 games in Grade 3 were thrillers. Calum McLeman took 4 for 19 as Fraserburgh did remarkably well to restrict Methlick to 137 for 9 at Lairds. 47 from Cory Bowie got the Broch side off to a great start, but Jamie Jones and then Adam Veersema took 3 wickets apiece to snatch victory for Methlick from the gaping jaws of defeat, bowling out Fraserburgh for 135 in the 37th over with Chris Gospel waiting at the other end in vain on 22 for the chance to hit a boundary.

80 from Sam Rotheram and 72 from Mark Herbert were the main contributors as Banchory put 221 for 9 on the board against Ellon, Brian Veldsman the best of the Ellon bowlers with 4 for 29. The Ellon big guns of Barrett and Webb replied with 85 and 64 respectively, and then Matt Sandham had to guide them to a 2 wicket victory as wickets were crumbling around him.

The spirit of cricket award for the weekend goes to the 2nd Grampian umpire who gave 2 lbw decisions in the first over of their innings at Huntly. Akil Mahbub was the only Grampian batter to make double figures with 42 as they were bundled out for 87, Steve Shorten taking 3 for 8 on his return. Huntly were never in control of the run chase and it was a nervous conclusion to the match as Huntly skipper Graham Reid was unbeaten on 10 to give them a 1 wicket win.

2nd AberGreen booked their Reid Cup semi final spot on Sunday with a convincing win against Fraserburgh. A century opening stand helped them to 200 for 5 in their 20 overs and Fraserburgh were bowled out for 94.

2nd Master Blasters moved back to the top of Grade 3 as they beat Stoneywood Dyce by 46 runs at Inverdee. An opening partnership of 102 set it up for Sabreesh Tenneti to make an unbeaten 57 as Master Blasters totalled 189 for 8. Reduced to 7 for 3 it was a mountain to climb for Stoneywood Dyce, and Joe Slater made 41 as they got in some useful batting practice.

2nd Gordonians made light work of beating 2nd Mannofield. Lokesh Saraswat scored 61 as Mannofield batted out the overs for 155 for 7, Gordos only losing 1 wicket as they won comfortably with Siv Gollakota undefeated on 78.

3rd Gordonians will be kicking themselves as they lost by 4 runs at Dunecht. Viji Nair was again amongst the wickets with 4 for 10 to dismiss Dunecht for 91, Barney Ingram top scoring with a valuable 33. 34 from Riyansh Kirodian rescued Gordos from a dire start, and at 69 for 9 skipper Viji Nair dug in to take them to 87 before he was run out with plenty of time to spare. 

A quick 3 for 1 from Bill Slee finished off a disappointing innings of 71 from Stonehaven against Crathie, but a remarkable 5 for 5 from Nigel King, including Lloyd Belton for a duck, bowled out Crathie for only 58.

In the SPCU North East Championship the Huntly overseas duo were on form with the bat yet again. 115 from Eli Ward-Armstrong was the highlight as they set 230 for 6 for Arbroath to chase, and chase they did, with Jared Meiring 73 not out as they won at a canter by 8 wickets. Arbroath now have a very handy lead at the top of the table.

Lewis Munro did the honours for Aberdeenshire as he took a first class 5 for 21 to bowl out Perth Doocot for 181, Joel Rush top scoring with 57. Josh Goodwin made 48 and Manu Saraswat 36, but nobody else for Shire made double figures as they were all out for 117. 

Mayank Bhandari picked up 5 for 24 as Gordonians dismissed 2nd Falkland for 118. An unbeaten 2nd wicket partnership of 118 between Abrar Ahmed (62) and Tanish Kirodian (37) gave Gordos a very easy win.

203 for 8 was a winning score as Strathmore bowled out a normally resilient Freuchie for 158. 

86 from Graeme Garden was the best of the 2nd Forfarshire total of 283 for 7 against Kinloch who finished 60 runs short with 9 wickets down.

In the Eastern Premier League Du Preez Stander batted all 50 overs of the Stoneywood Dyce innings, contributing 102 of their overall 219 for 8 against RH Corstorphine. The RHC openers couldn’t match the century from Stander, but they did put on 150 before Anthony Dunford was out for 95. He was one of 2 wickets to fall as RHC won in the 44th over.

Falkland did exceptionally well to bowl out Carlton for 136 and looked set for a victory as their openers put on 78, but from there it was collapse time and they were all out for 126.

Forfarshire haven’t fared well without Michael Leask and even though Craig Wallace batted through for 73, their 187 was chased down by Grange for the loss of only 3 wickets.

Brits and Gayashan were in the runs for Meigle with 54 and 47 respectively, but Eliot Ruthven took 5 for 17 as Heriot’s bowled them out for 209. 80 from Lloyd Brown helped Heriot’s to a 5 wicket win and they remain unbeaten at the top of the table with Grange.

The Stewart’s Melville v Watsonian game was a last ball, last wicket thriller. Riyaad Henry was again the star man scoring 105 as Stew Mel were all out in the 50th over for 254. Both Watsonian openers made half centuries but an unbeaten 78 from Jasper Davidson was key as they scrambled a single off the last ball to win.

Emma Walsingham with 45 topped the scoring for Stewart’s Melville women against Northern Lights at Mannofield as they batted their 30 overs for 149 for 8. The Lights openers got them off to a great start with Ailsa Lister hitting a quick 32 and Emma Halliwell adding 59, and they got over the line with 7 wickets down.