Dumfries shock Clydesdale
William Dick (CricketMedia Scotland)
STUART Corbett-Byers, the down-to-earth Dumfries captain, is not given to outbursts of exaggeration so his description of Saturday’s astonishing win over Clydesdale is worth noting.
After his side had completed an emphatic 98-run triumph against pre-season favourites Clydesdale, Corbett-Byers declared: “I would say this is the best result in the club’s history.
“We deliberately played things down when we beat Greenock last week but this result has taken things to a new level – we’re all wondering where we go from here!”
The occasion had a bitter-sweet tinge for Chris Bellwood who batted superbly throughout the innings and had reached 99 when Majid Haq sent down the final delivery of the innings.
Bellwood, newly returned to Dumfries following a spell at Greenock, suffered a rush of blood and danced down the track only to be deceived by the Saltires spinner who had him stumped.
However, Bellwood could be rightly proud of his sizeable contribution to a total of 168-7 – especially since the next highest-scoring batsman was Corbett-Byers with a modest 15.
The skipper added: “It was as if Chris was playing on a different wicket to everyone else.
“He timed his innings perfectly in really testing conditions and it’s just a shame he didn’t reach three figures.
“He was in two minds whether to take a single for his hundred or go for the big shot for the team.
“He knows now!”
Corbett-Byers believed Clydesdale were still favourites at the halfway stage but Pat Druce picked up four wickets for the second week running to make significant inroads into the visitors’ batting.
Scott Beveridge then spun his way through the tail to claim 4-9 as the Titwood club were dismissed for a dismal 70.
“It is not as if we have just sneaked a win,” enthused the captain. “We have destroyed them on the day.
“The guys can take great confidence from this performance but we must also keep our feet firmly on the ground.”
West of Scotland share top spot with Dumfries after they extended their fine start to the season with victory over Uddingston at Hamilton Crescent.
Defending a modest 156-8, the Partick men were indebted in large measure to John Blain for their 39-run success.
Blain, the former World Cup bowler, claimed four wickets for the second consecutive game, this time conceding only nine runs and completely undermining the visitors’ run-chase.
Victory would have been even more comprehensive but for the efforts of Uddingston skipper Calum MacLeod who contributed a battling 47 – the highest individual score of the game.
MacLeod, the former Warwickshire bowler, had earlier confirmed a return to form with the ball by claiming five wickets.
However, consistent contributions throughout the West batting order, including a top score of 27no by Blain, proved decisive.
Ayr bounced back from their opening day defeat to West with a solid 46-run success against Greenock at Cambusdoon.
Skipper Mark Renny contributed 74 to a total of 216-5 while Callum McLaughlin also made a half-century.
Scotland U19 bowler Scott McElnea was then Ayr’s bowling hero, claiming 5-25 as Greenock were dismissed for 170 despite a half-century from Shailesh Prabhu and 43 from Alex Baum.
The match between Drumpellier and Stirling was a victim of the weather.