1st XI look to regain winning form

This weekend, Greenock have two home matches to be played at Glenpark. On Saturday, Weirs provide the opposition for a league match and on Sunday, Uddingston return to replay the WU40 Cup quarter final, which had to be abandoned part way through the game last Sunday due to rain.

The match against Weirs is now little more than an opportunity to return to winning form and maintain a fourth top position in the league after last Saturday's disappointing defeat at Poloc, when a fine bowling and fielding performance, which had set up a good chance of defeating one of Scotland's in-form sides, was tossed away by an inability to bat through the overs and simply grind out a win.

But the locals must quickly put that behind them and focus on the good form which has been present in many of their matches in recent weeks, particularly since the arrival in late June of Tasmanian, Trent Keep.

The month of July has been one of the poorest for weather for many years and, if the weather is kind, Saturday's opponents Weirs could play their first full game since their win over Glasgow Accies on Saturday 27 June. During the month, the Glasgow southsiders have had league matches off against St Michaels and Poloc, their match against league leaders Stenhousemuir reduced to a Duckworth Lewis decision, which they narrowly lost, and last weekend their match against Irvine was abandoned mid way through the game due to heavy rain after their own innings had been completed.

In what is a short season in any case, late April through 'til the end of August, Scottish cricket has had a particularly difficult time this 'summer', as the weather has been generally dismal and groundstaff across the country have had their work cut out as they have fought the wet conditions to try and get games on.

So Weirs come to Glenpark with very little league cricket in recent weeks and will be keen to get a game played. And perhaps not surprisingly, their league form has been patchy, with three wins and five defeats from just eight matches which have beaten the weather.

Weirs player pool has changed dramatically in recent seasons and, during the winter close season, a significant influx of players from the former Active Life club transferred to the Albert Park club. So there are a few new faces in their line-up from last season.

In league matches played to date, there has been no one player who has been far and away outstanding in the Glasgow southsiders team. But players who Greenock would do well to watch out for include their two opening bowlers Adil Raza and Syed Shah. The Weirs attack has been led by these two players in most of their league matches and they have each gained a significant haul of wickets.

But perhaps it is the experienced Richard 'Siggy' Young that Greenock must be most prepared for, as he has regularly bowled well in the league this season, with 6 wickets for 33 runs against league leaders Stenhousemuir, his most recent spell of good form. And Greenock would do well to remember that Young with 3 wickets for 22 runs and Shah with 3 for 41 were the principal wicket-takers in the league encounter in Glasgow earlier in the season.

In the batting department, Weirs have rarely shown any real sign of being able to compile a total this season. Their best score was in the opening game against Poloc when they made 188 for the loss of 4 wickets, but still lost to their near neighbours. And since then a winning 156 runs for the loss of 9 wickets against lowly Glasgow Accies has been Weirs' only other score of any note, with not one of their batsmen having, as yet, achieved a league fifty.

Of course, Greenock have little to shout about as regards being able to post large scores this season and it may well be that the match on Saturday will be decided upon by which side is able to find form in the run scoring department.

Back in May, when the sides met at Albert Park, Greenock only just scraped through to a win thanks to a rearguard action from captain Shailesh Prabhu and the experienced Darren Walker and Phil McIntosh. From a very precarious 78 for 8, Greenock just managed to squeeze home with nine wickets down, with Prabhu 28 not out having been forced to return to the middle, having earlier suffered a hamstring injury which had lead to him having to go off the park.

Greenock will not want to have such a close call on Saturday and will wish to put in good performances with both bat and ball.

The Glenparkers will have coach Darren Walker back in the side after his absence last weekend but may well be without Greg McDougall who suffered a painful thigh injury at Poloc last Saturday.

A squad of twelve has been chosen, for the match which starts at 12 noon, but with Taylor and Walker sure to play, one of Gilmore or Mountford will have to be left out to satisfy the league rules on non-Scottish qualified players.

Match Sponsor for the game is Clyde Carriers


The Glenpark XI travel to Glasgow to play Albert Park in the Reserve League. After a good run of victories, the last two weeks have seen a couple of heavy defeats to the top two sides in the Reserve League, St Ninians and Shawholm. This week, therefore, the team will be keen to get back to winning ways, something which is well within their compass. This match starts at 1pm.


On Sunday at Glenpark, Premier Division side Tunnock's Uddingston are the opposition as Greenock seek to qualify for the semi-final stage of this season's WU40 Cup competition. The two sides were forced to abandon their match last Sunday due to incessant rainfall which began when Uddingston were 111 for 6 and the game very interestingly poised.

Premier Division Uddingston are currently sitting in mid table of the top league having won five out of their nine Premier league matches to date. The winner of this quarter final tie will travel to play Kelburne in the semi final. A result has to be obtained on Sunday so inclement weather would see a bowl-out to decide the winner. Hopefully, this will not be required and the forecast is promising but nothing will be taken for granted, given the summer we have experienced so far.

The squad for the match is unlikely to be finalised until nearer the time and will probably show a few changes from Saturday's team. The match will start at 1pm.

This match is sponsored by The Petshop Postie


Greenock Cricket Club is sponsored this season by Cleaning Supplies 4U.