McCREA FS WEST v DRUMPELLIER
By Bob Coats
The sun was out, the pitch perfect, the scene was set for this foot of the table clash between McCrea FS West and Drumpellier at Hamilton Crescent.
Drumpellier captain Mohammed Ramzan won the toss and rightly so made the decision to make use of the fantastic surface on offer. Ramzan and fellow opener Z.Mohammed built a patient yet solid first wicket partnership of 47 inside 14 overs, choosing to watch closely the new ball pair of Gavin Smith and West Captain John Blain. The only real chance being offered by Ramzan when he was on 10 in the 6th over, a caught behind of the bowling of Blain which West wicket keeper Jatinder Singh failed to hold onto. The partnership however was broken inside the 15th over when Blain removed Mohammed caught behind by Singh for 24. This brought the tall and destructive batsmen Graham McLaren to the crease for Drumps. He departed shortly after with the score on 65 cutting a wide delivery also from Blain to point where it was sharply caught by West all rounder Miro Ralston. McLarens departure brought A.Mohammed to the crease and signaled the start of his involvement in the match and an excellent 3rd wicket partnership of 89 between himself and Ramzan. Mohammed showing positive intent and Ramzan very much a supporting watchful role. Both dominated the West change bowlers, seamers Miro Ralston and Jonny Graham and spinners, Richard Cox and James Edwin Williamson. Ralston the pick of the group with 5 economical overs for only 18 runs. Mohammed finally went inside the 40th over bowled playing back to a fullish delivery off the bowling of Jonny Graham. Wickets continued to tumble around Ramzan in the last 10 overs of the Drumps innings but he remained unfazed. The experienced and intimidating figure of Sajjad came and went for 6 bowled off an excellent dipping slower ball from seamer Gavin Smith. Under 19 World Cup International Abdul Sabri was caught well in the deep by Watson off the bowling of Blain for an entertaining 19 runs from as many deliveries with the score on 181. Finally the big wicket of Ramzan. He fell in the 43rd over, caught behind by wicket keeper Singh off the bowling of Blain for 94 to give Blain his 4th wicket of the innings. Ramzans innings involved nine 4s and proved to be the lynch pin of the Drumpellier innings. Drumps closing on a respectable 210/6 off their 50 overs with William Leslie left unbeaten on 13.
West’s reply suffered the worst possible start losing Jonny Graham to the first ball of the innings off the seam bowling of Abdul Sabri. This brought senior player Ed Clarke to join Gregg Watson at the crease. Both made use of the fantastic batting surface on offer building a foundation for the West innings before Clarke went in the 14th over bowled by Allison for a well made 22 with the score on 61. West continued to build through Jatinder Singh (18) and James Edwin Williamson (22) but the rate was climbing and West began to fall behind it mainly due to the introduction of the 3 pronged spin attack for Drumps of Allison, Jay Sajjad and A.Mohammed.
Watson remained steadfast before he too was removed for a well made 68 with the score on 142, caught low at Mid off by Ramzan driving at a fullish length delivery off the bowling of spinner Mohammed. Mohammed was proving to be the difference removing Blain who hit a full toss to long on and Miro Ralston caught at short mid wicket. West found themselves requiring 63 runs inside the remaining 9 overs which quickly became 42 inside 5overs.
However amidst the tmble of wickets around him Dave McNulty continued to play his part with bat and kept West in the running for what would be a hard earned victory. McNulty single handedly reduced the required amount to 20 runs required inside the remaining 2 overs with a series of lusty blows off Mohammed both square of the wicket and down the ground toward Partick Borough Hall. Batting at the other end to McNulty, Vice Captain Gavin Smith retired hurt with a suspected torn hamstring which brought spinner Richard Cox to the crease before he was run out without troubling the scorers. Smith returned to the action aided by a runner (Miro Ralston) who would be at the non strikers end with McNulty on strike and West requiring 15 from the last over which was to be bowled by spinner Mohammed.
McNulty’s heroic efforts continued when he hit Mohamed’s first and third ball of the over for 6 reducing the amount required to 3 required to win and 2 to draw from 3 balls. A dot ball followed in the 4th ball of the over then on the second last ball of the over in his attempts to back up Miro Ralston was run out by the bowler after McNulty drove hard back at the bowler who collected and removed the bails. McNulty was left stranded for a magnificent 37 not out. Spinner Mohammed returned figures for Drumpellier of 5/55 from his 9.5 overs to add to his belligerent 29 with bat I the first innings.
McCrea FS West next League match is Away to East Kilbride at Torrance House on Saturday 28th June.