Greenock defy the rain to record first league win

Greenock 1st XI vs Glasgow Accies
WDCU CSL First Division
Saturday 16th May 2015

Glasgow Accies 153/9 N Dowers 41; DK Walker 3 for 33
Greenock 1st XI 149/6 BM Taylor 31; D Satpute 4 for 37

D/L Par score 148


Greenock defied the weather and a stern test from opponents Glasgow Accies, to gain a first league win of the 2015 season at a blustery and frequently wet Glenpark on Saturday.

The match had a delayed start due to the overnight and morning rain, but after a huge effort by groundsman, Roger Hardie, and the 1st XI players themselves, the game did eventually get under way but with the play reduced to just 42 overs per side.

Greenock won the toss and asked Accies to bat. The visitors got off to a steady, if slow, start to their innings . Opening batsmen Neil Dowers and Habib Malik put on 28 runs before Malik (6) was caught by Blake Taylor off second change bowler Darren Walker's very first delivery in the twelfth over of play.

Dowers became the second Accies batsman to lose his wicket but not until the 23rd over when he was LBW to the bowling of Jonathan Hempsey . He had scored a very commendable 41 runs out of a total of 68. Just two overs later and Hempsey struck again. This time he had Accies number three batsman David Holloway caught by wicketkeeper Aidan Forrest for 21 runs. 78 for 3 wickets.

Nirvik Ganapathi and Sandeep Dhayade put together a fourth wicket partnership of 32 runs before a piece of smart fielding by Darren Walker brought about the run out of Ganapathi for 21. New batsman Dhruv Satpute lasted only three balls before being bowled by Blake Taylor without troubling the scorers and a sixth wicket fell just two overs later when Taylor trapped Dhayade (11) LBW with the score then on 117.

Greenock were now in to the Accies tailenders and trying to wrap up their innings. Sheraz Chohan was caught by Louis Ware for just five runs from the bowling of Darren Walker, then visitors captain Richard Andrew led a mini fightback contributing 18 runs before Aidan Forrest took his second catch of the afternoon, this time from the bowling of Phil McIntosh. When Andrew departed Accies had slipped to 142 for 7 wickets and incoming batsman Habib Rao made it 142 for 8 when he was bowled first ball by Walker to take the former Australian professional's wicket tally to three for the afternoon.

A number of short rain interruptions during the Accies innings had further reduced the overs to be played to 38 per side and in a brief flurry of run scoring in the final over, Accies moved their score to 153 for the loss of 9 wickets at the end of their innings.

For Greenock, Darren Walker ended with team best figures of 3 wickets for 33 runs from 10 overs. Other wicket-takers were Blake Taylor with 2 for 14 from 7 overs, Jonathan Hempsey 2 for 35 from 9 overs and Phil McIntosh 1 for 45 from 8 overs.

The rain-delayed start of the match plus further stoppages in play meant that the Duckworth-Lewis (D/L) system was very much at the forefront of determining what Greenock needed to score and how quickly.

The Glenparkers made a promising start to their innings with openers Shailesh Prabhu and Neil Flack putting on 39 runs in just eight overs before Flack became the first of Dhruv Satpute's four wickets. He was caught by Holloway for 18. Prabhu (21) was caught by Malik off Satpute's bowling just five runs later to get Accies very much into the game.

The Greenock target was 149 from just 34 overs and so a run rate of almost 4.4 runs per over was needed.

A very useful 43 runs partnership between Ty Gilmore and Jonathan Hempsey, kept Greenock very much up to and slightly ahead of the necessary run rate as D/L was constantly at the centre of attention. Hempsey was caught by Ganapathi for 28 from the bowling of Malik in the twentieth over and then Gilmore was run out for 11 with the score on 93 in the twenty third over.

Greenock still had much to do and now needed to score at five runs per over in the remaining stage of the innings.

Blake Taylor and Rod Mountford batted well and looked to have the game won with an excellent, well controlled partnership which added 53 very valuable runs for Greenock and took the locals to within three runs of victory. But , as so frequently happens in the game of cricket, there was a late twist in the game. Taylor attempted a winning boundary in the second last over and sent a delivery from Satpute towering towards the deep mid on boundary only to be well caught by Ganapathi having top scored with 31 runs. And then, with no further runs added, Mountford was caught by Holloway for 18 to leave Greenock still needing just three runs from the final over but with two new batsmen at the crease.

The tense finish was ended after just three balls when Phil McIntosh stroked the runs needed to give Greenock a much sought after and morale-boosting first league win of the season.

Satpute ended with the excellent bowling figures of 4 wickets for 37 runs from 10 overs.