West hunting Championship glory
William Dick (CricketMedia Scotland)
McCREA FS WEST OF SCOTLAND v DRUMPELLIER
Former Scotland batsman Dougie Lockhart turned back the clock with a fine century as West stayed in the hunt for championship glory with victory at Uddingston a week ago and the Hamilton Crescent side’s big guns will have to be at their best again when they host resurgent Drumpellier. Two victories on the trot have been sufficient to hoist the Coatbridge club into a mid-table position and Graeme McLaren’s men, seeking revenge for their defeat to West earlier in the campaign, travel in confident mood. West, one of three sides to have led the table during the course of a stop-start season, need to keep winning if they are to have any chance of overhauling Clydesdale and Dumfries while Drumps, who also had a centurion last week in Rashid Yousaf, could climb into the top four if results go their way. West, still without top order batsman Andrew Umeed who is with the Scotland at the U19 World Cup in Australia, are unchanged. Yousaf is a late call-off for the visitors who are also missing Craig McDonald and Will Leslie but highly rated 15 year-old Nic Pyne is given a debut.
APD DUMFRIES v STIRLING COUNTY
Defeat at Clydesdale last week was sufficient to see Dumfries relinquish their place at the top of the table but the Nunholm men have an immediate chance to bounce back against a Stirling side who have managed just one win all season. The home side are without talented opening batsman Tom McBride who is on Scotland U19 duty. Stirling meanwhile will look for the same resolve from their main-line batsmen as was shown by their last pair, Obaid Hameed and George Smith, who added 63 in the defeat to Drumpellier.
LOCAL LIFE AYR v PSL TEAM SPORTS CLYDESDALE
Having knocked West off their table-topping perch a fortnight ago, Ayr will try to do the same to current leaders Clydesdale. The home side were unable to build on that win last week when their match at Greenock was rained-off but they remain in good spirits despite the absence of Scotland U19 player Scott McElnea. The visitors may be top but they will take nothing for granted especially after their midweek Rowan Cup final defeat to first division East Kilbride. Dale are boosted by the return of Majid Haq and Safy Sharif.
GREENOCK v TUNNOCK’S UDDINGSTON
A rare appearance by Saltires all-rounder Richie Berrington will give Greenock a timely lift for the visit of an Uddingston team skippered by his national team-mate Calum MacLeod. Berrington must galvanise a side who are slipping ever closer to the relegation trap-door. Today they may sense the chance to grab a lifeline against a side who have lost their last two games - and any chance of claiming the title.