Drumpellier edge out West
William Dick (CricketMedia Scotland)
A few short weeks ago it was a case of “disconsolate Drumpellier” as this summer’s rains took a particularly heavy toll on the Coatbridge cricketers.
Drumps were firmly in the dumps, having lost the only two games they had completed of a scheduled seven during the first half of the league season.
Three weeks and three victories later, Graeme McLaren’s side have shot from bottom of the table to sit on the fringes of the title race.
Their latest success saw them outgun one-time leaders West of Scotland in a game which cheated the elements long enough to produce the only result on Saturday’s Western Premier card.
Few would begrudge them this victory especially after they first recovered from the late call-off of last week’s century hero Rashid Yousaf and then endured the worst of the conditions after being sent in on a tricky Hamilton Crescent track.
Following the loss of Gordon Shaw for 13, Asad Mohammed, with his second half-century in a row, and skipper McLaren provided the substance of their side’s innings with a stand of 72.
The pair were forced to tough it out in the face of some hostile bowling on a wicket of uneven bounce and Asad in particular suffered for the cause, taking a few painful blows on various parts on the anatomy.
McLaren eventually fell for a patient 32, featuring four boundaries, while Asad showed his class by top-scoring with a well-crafted 80.
A couple of lusty late blows over the rope from Nazer Hussain, the professional, and Ally Rawlinson hoisted the visitors’ tally to 187-6.
With storm clouds gathering all around and torrential rain falling less than half-a-mile away, it looked as if this match might go the same way as so many this season.
Remarkably, however, the rain stayed away long enough for Drumpellier to clinch a dramatic victory.
With an eye on the skies West managed to stay in touch with the D/L target despite the loss of three early wickets.
However, when Hussain returned to the attack to bowl Dougie Lockhart for 23, Drumps had the edge.
Within a few balls of Lockhart’s departure the heavens opened and the Coatbridge side were declared winners by just four runs.
“D/L has never been kind to us in the past and this is the first time I’ve ever won a game by this method,” revealed McLaren.
“The pro produced a fantastic ball to get Lockhart and we went from being three runs behind to four ahead.
“It was remarkable that the rain stayed off as long as it did because you could see there were storms all around.
“I think we played a smart game and it was pleasing that after being put in on that wicket we were able to get a total we felt we could defend.”
Elsewhere, Ras Priyadarshana’s century was in vain for Uddingston whose clash with Greenock was abandoned after just one innings at Glenpark.
There was also frustration at Nunholm and Cambusdoon where Dumfries’ encounter with Stirling and the match between Ayr and Clydesdale failed to go the distance on another rain-hit Saturday.