Greenock lose out to West in rain-affected match

West of Scotland vs Greenock 1st XI
CSL Western Premier Division
Saturday 9th June 2012

Greenock 1st XI 135 for 8 (0 pts) SS Prabhu 47, RG Begley 41*; JAR Blain 3 for 8
West of Scotland 167 for 3 (10 pts) ARI Umeed 66, G Watson 55


West of Scotland set 164 to win in 37 overs by Duckworth-Lewis

Greenock lost out to McCrea West at Hamilton Crescent in Glasgow on Saturday in a match which was reduced in length due to a period of heavy rain mid-way through the afternoon. As a result, the Duckworth-Lewis system was required to be used to establish the total which West required to chase after Greenock had posted 136 for 8 at the end of the weather-interrupted 37 overs which they had been able to complete. The calculations computed that West needed to score 164 from 37 overs to win and they achieved that with only a few minor alarms. In the end, it was a comfortable win for the Hamilton Crescent team.

The CSL Premier Division West match began in bright sunshine and Greenock, batting first made a good start with openers Shailesh Prabhu and Alex Baum coping well against the West opening bowlers Gavin Smith and David McNulty. After ten overs, 31 runs were on the board and both batsmen were looking well set but in the twelth over Baum (15) got an edge to a ball from McNulty and Dougie Lockhart held on to a good catch in the slips.

Ian Cran and former Scottish Saltire and Yorkshire County pace bowler John Blain replaced Smith and McNulty, and in the 20th over Blain had Mpho Sekhoto caught by wicketkeeper Ian Young with the score on 64. Just nine runs later and a similar dismissal saw the end of Chris Hempsey. Blain then claimed his third wicket of the innings when Shailesh Prabhu was judged LBW just three runs short of what would have been a well deserved half century.

Greenock were now 82 for 4 and needing a serious partnership to get back into the game. Instead, with the score having moved along to 91 for 4 at the end of the 31st over, a lengthy rain interruption delayed the game, and when the match re-started just over an hour later, Greenock’s innings had been reduced to just 37 overs.

So with just six overs remaining and having been told that losing wickets would not interfere with the Duckworth-Lewis calculations, the Greenock tactic was simple ....score as many runs as possible in the overs remaining.

Greenock captain Ryan Begley almost single-handedly pushed the score along at a brisk pace. A total of 44 runs were added in the last part of the innings to take Greenock to 135 at the end of the 37 overs. West captured four more wickets during this fast and furious run chase but Begley was not out with 41 runs to his credit after a fine display of positive stroke-making.

Former Saltire John Blain had the best bowling analysis taking 3 wickets for just 8 runs from the eight overs he bowled. David McNulty 2 for 20, Craig Brown 2 for 32 and Gavin Smith 1 for 46 were the other wicket-takers for West.

Although Greenock had scored 135 runs at the end of their 37 overs, Duckworth-Lewis indicated that West required to score 164 from their 37 overs to win the match, presuming that there were no further rain interruptions.

Keen to get early wickets to put some pressure on to the home side, Greenock made the best possible start when at the beginning of the second over, with the very first ball of his spell, Jonathan Hempsey had Ian Young caught by Ryan Begley for 1 run.

However it was to prove a false dawn as Gregg Watson and Andrew Umeed batted with great skill and composure adding 133 runs for the second wicket, which did not fall until 29th over, by which time the writing was well and truly on the wall for Greenock . Watson was the batsman who perished having compiled 55 runs when he was bowled by Mpho Sekhoto.

At this point West required 30 runs with eight overs and eight wickets remaining.

The sight of one of Scotland’s most capped cricketers, Dougie Lockhart walking imperiously to the wicket, was perhaps not what Greenock needed at this stage, and although Umeed (66) provided the Glenpark men with a third wicket when he mis-timed a drive and was well caught in the slips by Sekhoto from the bowling of Waleed Jumal, it did not take long for the match to end. Lockhart played just six scoring shots, which included two 6s and two 4s, and scored 24 not out to secure a well deserved win for his side.

This coming Saturday in the CSL Premier Division West, Stirling County are the visitors to Glenpark and Greenock will be hoping Richie Berrington will be fit to play and that the winning form of just over a week ago can be regained.