Exciting clashes scheduled in Western Division
William Dick (CricketMedia Scotland)
STIRLING v DUMFRIES
Stirling will finally get the chance to make their mark on the top flight of cricket in the west after the weather put paid to their first two fixtures and the New Williamfield side can take their lead from today’s visitors who have already claimed two big scalps. Stuart Corbett-Byers, the Dumfries captain, admits he was unsure what to expect when his side took their place in the new domestic structure. He was pleasantly surprised when they opened with a resounding win at Greenock and almost ecstatic when they followed-up with an equally convincing win against a highly-fancied Clydesdale outfit.
Corbett-Byers remains cautious but now knows his team need fear no-one. He said: “I would say beating Clydesdale is the best result in the club’s history. We deliberately played things down when we overcame Greenock but beating the team that many rate favourites for the title has taken things to a new level – we’re all wondering where we go from here!” The Dumfries captain has stressed that feet will remain firmly on the ground, a wise policy against a Stirling side who are itching to get into action and who benefit this season from the coaching and motivational skills of Tony Judd and who, in Josh Edwards and Nick Farrar, have two of the most promising talents in the country.
DRUMPELLIER v McCREA FS WEST OF SCOTLAND
Like Stirling, Drumpellier have been frustrated by the rain but the last of three scheduled home fixtures will go ahead. Also like Stirling, the Coatbridge side entertain a team who have already put two wins on the board and who are bidding to maintain impressive momentum under new player-coach John Blain. Drumpellier may be short of fifty-over action but they are unbeaten in the T20 format and skipper Graeme McLaren and his troops take heart from a midweek Murgitroyd Rowan Cup success against Kelburne.
PSL TEAM SPORTS CLYDESDALE v LOCAL LIFE AYR
Clydesdale are on the rebound from last week’s shock defeat at Dumfries and skipper Zeeshan Bashir will demand a positive response. His side have already put one over on today’s opponents in a Rowan Cup fixture last Sunday but Ayr will focus on the positives from their league success against Greenock. The Titwood outfit welcome back Kasim Farid and Lyle Hill but Ayr are still without their professional Craig Thyssen who has yet to arrive from South Africa. The visitors, though, could hand a debut to Scotland U19 pace bowler Stan Shillington who has joined the club.
TUNNOCK’S UDDINGSTON v GREENOCK
Uddingston are bidding to get their title challenge back on course following last week’s under-par display against West of Scotland. However, they entertain a Greenock outfit who are determined to put their first win on the board following defeats to Dumfries and Ayr. The Lanarkshire side welcome back Gavin Bradley who will bolster the middle order and provide skipper Calum MacLeod with another bowling option. MacLeod’s personal joust with Saltires team-mate Richie Berrington provides an intriguing sub-text.