Only the CSL beats the weather
RAIN did its best to wreck the cricket card yesterday and, while it succeeded in wiping out the entire Western Premier card, significant action beat the elements in the Eastern Premier.
It called for patience with delayed starts, interruptions or both punctuating proceedings but it was worthwhile for Grange in particular who rekindled their title challenge with victory at Forfarshire.
The pre-season title favourites had lost two of their previous three league matches but they arrested the decline to win by 37 runs.
Ryan Flannigan set the tone for a positive approach by smacking the first delivery for the match through the covers for four.
It was one of several belligerent strokes from the former Saltires star who hit 41 while Dylan Budge trumped him with 47 as Grange posted 174-8 in a match reduced to 40 overs.
Several Forfarshire batsmen made promising starts but none went on to play the major innings required as they fell to 137 all out, James Tapper and Nick Farrar each claiming four wickets for the visitors.
Grange’s win took on even more significance as leaders Arbroath slumped to only their second defeat of the campaign, going down at home to Aberdeenshire.
In a match reduced to 39 overs, the hosts crawled to a disappointing 150 before the Dons reached the target with four wickets to spare.
South African Lesiba Ngoepe was the standout performer with three wickets and 44 runs for Aberdeenshire.
Elsewhere, Heriot’s took welcome revenge on Watsonians by staving off the prospect of a third defeat in seven days against their capital rivals.
Knocked out of the Scottish Cup by the Myreside men last Sunday and beaten by the same team in the Masterton Trophy final on Friday evening, Heriot’s might have feared the worst.
After all, they had been on the receiving end of a George Munsey run-blitz just a few hours earlier, the Scotland batsman smashing 118 from only 51 balls as ‘Sonians amassed 211-4 in the T20 event.
It was a much more sedate affair in the 50-over competition at Myreside yesterday as Heriot’s, batting first, had to battle hard to reach a competitive 242-7.
A half-century from South African Hayes van der Berg set a platform before a brilliant unbeaten 80no from Peter Ross grabbed the initiative.
In reply, the Watsonians batsmen were brilliantly subdued by the visiting attack who bowled their rivals out for 174 to complete a 50-run win on D/L.
Glenrothes consolidated their position in the top half of the table with a convincing win over SMRH at Inverleith.
In tricky batting conditions, the Fifers were indebted to a solid 48 from Fred Cully who got his head down while wickets fell at the other end.
The consistent opener faced 73 balls and stroked six boundaries but his departure left Glenrothes in a bit of bother on 82-5.
However, Vasu Bogireddy and Jamie Penman followed Cully’s lead with 27 and 19 to hoist the tally to 161 before the final wicket fell.
Rain caused SMRH’s target to be revised on two occasions but it proved irrelevant as the Edinburgh side were bowled out for 94 to lose by 45 runs.
The match between Falkland and Carlton was abandoned with the visitors having reached 70-3 at Scroggie Park.