It’s the Reid Cup final on Sunday at People’s Park between Stoneywood Dyce and 3rd Gordonians with a 4pm start. Best of luck to both teams. Only the Aberdeenshire Cup final on the 27th to round off the distribution of knockout cups.
In Grade 1 it’s the potential league decider as Master Blasters play Bon Accord at Inverdee. A lot of eyes on this game after their previous encounter this season, both sides keeping their team selections to themselves.
Gordonians go to Inverurie on Saturday hoping to keep up the pressure on the top 2. Inverurie will be glad to have George Hadden back, but their bowling looks stretched without Jordan Thom and Fraser Lawrance. No Akhlaq Bashir for Gordonians who also miss Sheetal Mehta.
Plenty of runs in the Mannofield batting order again, but no Rizwan Tahir as they are at Allan Park against Cults, surely the hardest team to predict in terms of performance in Grade 1.
It’s an 11am start at Harlaw as Grampian host Knight Riders, although the early start might play into the hands of the probable overnight rain.
The relegation places might look a little clearer when we have a winner from the Crescent versus AberGreen match at Links.
AGSFPs take a very strong side to Methlick as they look to edge another step towards the Grade 2 title. Lairds has struggled with drainage issues for large parts of the season, so hopefully the forecasted rain stays a few hundred yards north or south of the River Ythan.
If you add up all the Fraserburgh batting averages and compare them to those of Will George and Sam Rotheram of Banchory, then this result looks cut and dried, but Fraserburgh have had a habit this season of defying the obvious odds. Fraserburgh are the ones making the long trip.
Duthie Park has survived many a downpour this season and Portcullis will be hopeful that their game against 2nd Grampian goes ahead. Owen Thorpe has been the anchor of their innings on a regular basis, and if others can play expansively around him Portcullis will be favourites.
Alex Starling is a new name on the Ellon team sheet as they head to Huntly, and 2nd Knight Riders would be expected to get a positive result at home to 2nd AberGreen.
It’s 1st versus 2nd in Grade 3 as leaders 2nd Master Blasters are at Countesswells to face 2nd Gordonians. Umesh Basavaraju, Siv Gollakota and Jamil Shaikh are back for Gordos who are without Alex Hounsome.
4th place Stoneywood Dyce include 2 debutants at home to Crathie as they warm up for the Reid Cup final on Sunday.
Their cup final opponents, 3rd Gordonians, play 2nd Mannofield at Rubislaw. The latter include the mercurial Lokesh Saraswat who takes the average age above 16, and Gordos have an array of bowlers to bamboozle the less experienced players within the Mannofield ranks.
Lewis Crutchfield has consistently been amongst the wickets for 2nd Methlick, but he may have to take a couple more than usual if they are to compete at Dunecht.
With the top and bottom of the SPCU North East Championship already decided, some of the upcoming games have an element of ‘playing for pride’ attached to them. Basement side 2nd Falkland are due at Mannofield to play Aberdeenshire who will be looking to bounce back from a below par batting performance against Perth Doo’cot last Saturday. Only Lewis Munro and Kenny Reid have made it to 3 figures this season, and only 2 additional players have recorded a half century, so it’s a perfect chance to improve those numbers.
3rd place Huntly are due at Forfar to play Kinloch, and it’s a mid table match up at Freuchie as 2nd Forfarshire visit.
The match of the day in terms of importance may be the one at Countesswells as Strathmore play Gordonians who are immediately above them in the table. Gordonians again miss skipper Mayank Bhandari, and have doubts about the fitness of Aman Arora.
Champions Arbroath go to 2nd place Perth Doo’cot who will be keen to make amends for a 7 wicket defeat in the reverse fixture when Safyaan Sharif wasn’t available.
In the Eastern Premier League, Grange head to Meigle, the latter probably having minimal expectations of producing a shock against the 2023 champions.
Jack Lambley and Abdullah Khalid are amongst those returning for Stoneywood Dyce as they go to Broughty Ferry to face a very strong Forfarshire.
The Heriot’s bowling attack should be too strong for Stewart’s Melville and Carlton should edge the other Edinburgh derby against RH Corstorphine on the same basis.
Watsonian are at Falkland who might need a stock of replacement pink balls if Oli Hairs tees off.