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Match Report
Derek Scott

On three beautiful sunny days many records were broken by batsman but the very good wicket defeated the bowlers and the match was drawn. Ireland won the toss for the fourth time in four in 1976. Ivan Anderson became the first man to score a century in each innings for Ireland (and in a first class match at that); four centuries were scored in the match - a new record; three centuries were scored in the match for Ireland - a record; the Anderson-Riordan stand of 222 for the fourth wicket was a record for any wicket for Ireland.

Ireland brought in J WG Elder as opening bowler for Torrens, who was not available. The only player new to the Ireland v Scotland match was GP O'Brien. For Scotland ER Thompson was not available. On the first morning, when play began at 11 AM, there was a slight trace of moisture. Clark took three wickets in his first five overs and Ireland were 31-3. Reith (0) was bowled off stump with the total on five, Short nibbled a catch to the wicket-keeper at 17 and Harrison played on while driving at 31. Anderson and O'Riordan set out to repair the damage. They added 222 in 213 minutes, with Anderson's share at 147. He played confidently after a careful start. All the bowlers were treated alike. When he was 48, and the score 93, Brown badly dropped him at deep square leg off Hardie. Anderson's 50 came up in 84 minutes and the 100 in 106 minutes. Then Laing dropped Anderson at close slip off Goddard when 55. O'Riordan made only 24 of the 100 stand. He was out of form and his timing was off but he stuck in well and played carefully in support of Anderson. At lunch the score was 139-3 (scored off 150 minutes), Anderson 83 and O'Riordan 27.

In the 58th over Anderson went to his 100 out of 170 in 156 minutes. O'Riordan reached 53 with the total on 195 in 153 minutes. 200 went up in the 62nd over when Brown dropped a v+ery difficult catch at deep square leg off Goddard offered by Anderson. The 200 stand came up. Then O'Riordan hit Hardie over mid-on to make the stand worth 204. The highest previous Irish stand was for the sixth wicket between AD Comyn and WG Hamilton. They put on 201 against I Zingari at Phoenix in 1896. Eventually, at 253, Anderson tired and hit a short ball from Goddard to Racionzer at short midwicket. 253-4-147. Anderson batted 213 minutes and faced 214 balls. He hit 18 fours. Next ball O'Brien played down the wrong line and was bowled! Corlett came in and, when still 0, Hardie dropped a low caught and bowled. He then hit Goddard out of the ground at square leg. 300 came up in 260 minutes in the 81st over. At tea the score was 314-5, O'Riordan 94, Corlett 41 - made in 38 minutes.

The new ball was taken and Corlett hit Robertson's second ball for six to square leg. He went to his 50 in 48 minutes. A few moments later O'Riordan went to 100 out of 332 in 259 minutes. Peden returned and got the dashing Corlett out when he flicked him to square leg where Clark took the catch. 354-6-59. At 360 O'Riordan gave a gentle catch the bowler, Clark and was out with his total on 117. He had played very well after a slow start. Two centuries in the same innings had only been achieved once before by Ireland - again at Hamilton Crescent in 1911 by Honorable HGH Mulholland (149) and RH Lambert (103*). At 377-8 Ireland declared leaving Scotland 50 minutes to bat.

In Elders first over Brown spooned a lifter to Monteith at cover and, in his second over, Racionzer slashed at a ball to Reith who hung onto it. At 22 More tried to flick Corlett to leg and was bowled. In this over there was a wide, a no-bowl, a boundary and the wicket. By close of play Weir and Stewart had taken the score to 43.

After a break on Sunday for a one-day match, the main match resumed on Monday at 11 AM. Scotland's first objective was 228 to save the follow-on. In 150 minutes before lunch, 110 were scored for the loss of two further wickets, both to splendid catches. O'Riordan was unable to bowl due to a sore foot and TA Parker fielded as substitute for MS Reith who had injured an arm in the one-day match. In the first over from Corlett there was an appeal for a catch at the wicket from Weir. It was turned down. Then Weir took 10 off another Corlett over. When Weir was 29 Halliday dropped a dolly at mid-on off Elder. Monteith came on at 79. After an hour of play, with the total on 80, it was Monteith who broke the stand. He brilliantly caught Weir low, right-handed at second slip off Corlett. 80-4-39. Laing started shakily but lost Stewart at 119. Stewart lifted Halliday over mid-on. Parker turned, ran, and caught it coming over his shoulder. Stewart had batted just over two hours for 31. 119-5 was the high point of Ireland's success. The next pair, Laing and Peden, added 94. The score at lunch was 153, with Laing 35 and Peden 12. 30 minutes after lunch came a vital dropped catch off Corlett who had just come back on. The score was 159, Laing was 39 and the catch went shoulder height to Colhoun, standing back. In the hour after lunch 35 were added. With the total on 198 the new ball was taken after 86 overs. At 213 Elder bowled Peden for 45 after Laing had gone to 50 in 153 minutes. The follow-on was saved and at tea the score was 244-6, Laing 70, Hardie 15.

At 289 Laing went to 101 with a total at 289. He was in for 254 minutes and was the first left-handed Scottish century maker against Ireland since Jim Henderson at Paisley in 1954. While it served his side well that such an ordinary player as Laing should reach a century indicates the quality of the wicket. Immediately after reaching 100 Laing had a let off when Harrison failed to judge a catch at midwicket off Halliday. Hardie suddenly began to strike out. Towards the end of his innings he hit five fours and reached 50 in two hours. The declaration came at 6:08 PM at 354-6. Laing was 127 (scored in 304 minutes off 286 balls) and Hardie 65. Appropriately the last over was a maiden from Anderson to Laing for in the midst of plenty Anderson bowled 16 overs for only 21 runs. Elder with 3-56 in 21 overs was the most successful bowler.

Ireland went in with 42 minutes left and leading by 23. O'Riordan deputised for Reith and was out "flashing" in Clark's second over. At the close of play the score was 16-1, Short eight and Harrison six. On the third day Ireland had to make sure not to be bowled out swiftly. In 150 minutes before lunch they scored a further 107 runs and lost three more wickets. At 37 Peden dropped a dolly at silly mid off. It was offered by Harrison (17) off Hardie. But at 39 Harrison played on to Hardie's arm ball which kept a little low. Short started to play shots. He hit Goddard for two fours in an over. Then he tried to pull one which was too far up in the same over and was LBW. 55-3-32. Reith came in and played second fiddle to a very aggressive Anderson. In 51 minutes they added 60. Reith made only 13 of these. Then a low full toss from Robertson hit his off stump. Anderson went to his 50 out of 116 in only 72 minutes with five fours. At lunch the score was 123-4, Anderson 53, O'Brien three. The lead was now 146 with only 65 minutes and 20 overs left. A declaration, other than a token one, was impossible. This token declaration came at 3:19 PM in the second of the last 20 overs. Meanwhile O'Brien was out at 150, caught in the gully driving at Hardie, Corlett was LBW to Hardie at 156 and Monteith was caught in the gully at 163, these three wickets all falling to Hardie in successive overs. Halliday arrived with Anderson 76 not out. They put on 45 of which Anderson made 27. Then, with a pull for four of Hardie, he went from 99 to 103 in 159 minutes off 146 balls. Ireland at once declared.

Scotland had at most 14 overs. After seven the match was given up with Scotland 31-2. More and Brown were both caught by Colhoun. Brown had an unhappy match. He "bagged a pair" and dropped a vital catch. An enjoyable sunny visit was over but the wicket was the winner, it was too good. Dr. Joe Davidson gave a splendid Danish buffet at his cricket club on Saturday night and Chivas Wine, who sponsored the match, give a drinks reception on Monday evening.

In the Sunday match at Titwood (Clydesdale cricket club) Scotland won easily by 219-8 (More 88 and Man of the Match, Peden 42*, Stewart 36) to Ireland's 117 (Monteith 40, Robertson 3-10). Parker played in this match instead of O'Riordan.