1st XI make winning start to league campaign


Greenock 1st XI 226 for 9 AS Tolhurst 84, CJ Nowlan 79; S Mazumder 4 for 36
Hillhead 102 K Patel 48*; AS Tolhurst 3 for 11


The 1st XI made the perfect start to the 2024 Western Premiership Two league programme at Glenpark on Saturday with a resounding 124 run win over Hillhead from the west end of Glasgow.

For once, Greenock missed the heavy rain showers which peppered many areas in west central Scotland on Friday evening and Saturday morning and Glenpark was in good condition for the opening league match of the season.

Hillhead, fresh from promotion from the Western Premiership Three, came to Glenpark in confident mood but left well beaten having been outclassed with both bat and ball.

Captain Greg McDougall opted to bat first having won the pre-match coin toss and opened with last weekend's century maker Connor Nowlan and former team captain Shailesh Prabhu. The pair made a steady start taking advantage of any loose deliveries and notching up a number of boundaries.

But with the last ball of the fifth over with the score on 21, Prabhu mis-timed a clip shot to the leg side and was caught by Jarred Bartlett off the bowling of Cameron Horn having scored 6 runs.

Nowlan and Harry Briggs continued to score at a good pace but lost Briggs with 50 runs on the board in the tenth over.

That wicket brought together the side's two Australian amateurs and the pair took the score along to 115 with Nowlan in fine run-scoring mood and looking as though he might go on to make a second successive century.

But change bowler Gavin Lynch broke the partnership when he trapped Nowlan leg before wicket for 79 with the first ball of the 25th over.

Cammy Calder joined Angus Tolhurst out in the middle and the next five overs added 34 runs. However, the introduction of Shashwat Mazumder in the bowling attack produced an immediate result for Hillhead with the wicket of Calder (13) with just his second delivery.

The score was then on 149 for 4 wickets after 30 overs and the team were well placed to go on and score in excess of 200 runs from their allotted 50 overs which was just what did happen.

Tolhurst, in particular, maintained a positive approach and built a fine personal innings with support from a number of others such as Vishal Yadav (12) and Sam Sanghera (10 not out) who provided useful runs.

Tolhurst top scored with an innings of 84 runs which included ten boundaries and which came to an end with just three overs of the innings still to be played.

At the close of the 50th over, the total had reached a satisfying 226 for the loss of 9 wickets.

Hillhead's best bowling performance came from Shashwat Mazumder who picked up 4 wickets for 36 runs from his 10 overs.

The Glasgow side's reply began with Mazumder and Krushnesh Patel opening the innings and adding 30 runs from the first six overs. However, Mazumder was removed LBW for 18 runs by Sam Sanghera and thereafter Hillhead's batsmen, with the exception of Patel, all failed to get into double figures as wickets fell regularly.

The opening partnership of 31 runs was the biggest of the innings and without the 48 runs from Patel, who remained not out at the end, the team's total of 102 runs would have been much less.

McDougall used seven bowlers of whom Angus Tolhurst, 3 wickets for 11 runs from 10 overs with 5 maidens, had the outstanding statistics. Connor Nowlan 2 for 28 from 7 overs, Chirag Pandher 2 for 1 run from 1 over and Sam Sanghera and the captain himself with one wicket apiece were the other wicket-takers.

Not surprisingly, Tolhurst with 84 runs and 3 wickets for 11 runs, was Man of the Match.