Tim Hart reports, “Sunday the 4th of June saw the Western Warriors Under 15s welcome the Eastern Knights to Glenpark (Greenock CC) – with the hosts, pleasingly, making it two wins from two championship matches. Skipper Asad Khan (Clydesdale CC) won a very useful toss and elected to bowl on a wicket which certainly should have offered the bowling side some early assistance. However, the Knights then cruised to 40 for 0 off just ten overs – with both batters looking very much ‘in’. A mix-up then led to both batters being stranded at one end – but it still required wicket-keeper David Sturgess (Clydesdale CC) to show some composure and collect a pretty tricky throw to complete the run out. Rafay Khan (Renfrew CC) then picked up two wickets in one over and the Knights were suddenly 46 for 3 off thirteen overs.
“Opener McIntosh and number five Campbell re-built well – punishing the odd loose delivery and putting the fielders under some pressure with good, aggressive running. Skipper Khan rotated his bowlers effectively and, immediately after drinks, it was the return of Shahzad Ahmad (Ferguslie CC) which led to both batters being dismissed within three overs of each other. The returning Fletcher Rao (Prestwick CC) then picked up a well-deserved ‘3-for’ and Sohaib Shah (Poloc CC) offered good control from one end, with 5-0-14-0. Shah’s second spell produced the ninth wicket and Ahmad then joined Rao with a ‘3-for” shortly afterwards. The Knights 137 all out – Rao 3 for 24, Ahmad 3 for 27.
“In reply, Ross Heginbottom (Clydesdale CC) took advantage of a very tough diving catch going down and proceeded to unleash some vicious hits along with a couple of expertly timed punches. One nineteen-ball spell in his innings saw him score 44 runs, reach a much-deserved half century, and dispatch the match ball over the wall for the only 6 of the match! Meanwhile, opening partner Angus Guy (Clydesdale CC) worked the ball around well and added four boundaries of his own. When Heginbottom (78) was run out, the score was 107 for 1 off just 15.4 overs – and bowlers and fielders understandably looked a little bewildered. Although there was a little moment of concern as 123 for 1 became 124 for 3 as Guy (34) was also run out and Khan fell leg before to one which kept low, Adam Malik (Dumfries CC) and Sturgess saw the side home – with a pull for 4 by Sturgess completing a seven-wicket win, with just under half the overs to spare.
“The Warriors bowling attack displayed some increased discipline (fewer wides!) than two weeks ago and Khan rotated his bowlers very effectively – although the ground fielding is definitely the ‘next’ area which needs worked on very hard over the next few weeks. With the bat, the opening partnership was a perfect combination of power and touch – and, despite the two run outs, the running between the wickets showed far more intent. Overall, a really good win – but there is plenty of cricket still to be played in this season’s Championship.”