Sun. May 19th, 2024

Weekend preview – 4th/5th May

It’s the first weekend of cricket in May and the Arrows have the return of the Eastern Premier League and the Scottish Cup to look forward to.  


On Saturday at 1pm the First XI will head across town to Goldenacre to play Heriot’s.  Last year the Nails finished 2nd in the EPL, 2 places above the Arrows.  In this fixture last year skipper Arun Pillai won the toss and opted to bat first.  A decent opening stand was broken when Ruaraidh Main (16) nicked off with 41 on the board.  Daniel Da Costa didn’t last long but Pillai joined Finn Thornton at the crease and rebuilt things until, with the score on 88, Thornton fell for 48 from only 41 balls.  That sparked an almighty collapse as Carlton lost the remaining 7 wickets for only 20 runs as they were bowled out for 108 in the 29th over.  Lewis O’Donnell, making his debut for the Arrows, struck in the 4th over to reduce the home side to 6 for 1 and in the 9th over Omar Ahmad removed the other opener.  At the end of that over the umpires called for the covers and no more play was possible and the game was abandoned with Heriot’s 39 for 2.  This Saturday Ruaridh McIntyre comes back into the fold and Chris McBride will be on official debut, having scored a ton last week in preseason.


The Second XI, off the back of a strong display against Watsonians 2s last week, welcome Drummond Trinity to Grange Loan.  Last year Drummond Trinity finished 6th in ESCA Division 1. In their opening league fixture of the year DTs bowled Clackmannan County out for 47 on the grass at Inverleith Park, with Tumma and Koden both picking up 4 wickets.  In response the hosts chased the total down for the loss of only 1 wicket.  Charlie Buchanan-Smith is set to make his first appearance of 2024 as well as Michael Raikes joining back up with the Arrows.  


The Third XI are away at Double Hedges on Saturday as they face off against Kirk Brae.  The 3s finished 1 place behind Kirk Brae as both teams avoided the drop.  The hosts were involved in a high scoring encounter at Newfield as they defeated Edinburgh Accies 2s by 11 runs in round 1.  In the corresponding fixture last year skipper Brad McKay lost the toss and the home team decided to bat first.  Shaun Smith struck in the first over but the home side were scoring freely.  It took until the 17th over for the next wicket to fall as the other opener nicked off to McKay.  Runs continued to flow and although Ben Thurman chipped in with 3 wickets as well as 2 more for Smith plus a runout and 1 apiece for Vijay Nagarajan & Dougie Firth which saw Kirbrae bowled out for 206 in the 40th over.  In reply, the 3s were well placed at drinks with the score 92 for 3 and Paul Kentish & Euan Keatinge going well but both set batters were run out and the new men couldn’t come to terms with conditions and the 3s collapsed to 115 all out, to lose by 91 runs.


The Fourth XI will finally get their Division 5 campaign underway, after a washout last week, as they host Watsonians 3s at Meggetland.  Watsonians 3s finished 8th in Division 5 last year but got off to a better start in 2024 as they defended a total of 115 against MDAFs 3s last weekend.  Two weeks ago the sides met at Myreside for a preseason friendly.  Captain Al Murray called correctly and opted to bat first.  Tom Hathorn & Marc Dweck put on 42 for the first wicket before Hathorn holed out for 17.  Shreyas Tekale joined Dweck and added 28 before both were run out in quick succession.  Dougie Scott’s stay was brief but did include a big 6 to the long boundary.  Chris Sale & Murray rebuilt things and took the score to 125 before Sale picked out a fielder for 21.  2 more wickets fell, including the skipper for 37, but some good late order hitting saw the 4s finish on 188 for 7 from their 40 overs.  Abhi Mehta picked up an early wicket but a good second wicket partnership kept the home side up with the rate.  It was eventually broken by John Gill thanks to a fine catch from Sale at midwicket.  2 quick wickets from Tekale had Watsonians in trouble at 65 for 4 but once again the home side rebuilt.  Although there were more wickets for Gill, Josh Cully (2) & Mehta the home side got over the line with 10 balls and 2 wickets to spare.


The Fifth XI will head to the north side of town as they face Holy Cross 2s on Saturday at Arboretum.  The Arrows did the double over Holy Cross in 2023 as Saturday’s hosts finished two spots below the 5s in 7th.  Last weekend Holy Cross defeated MDAFs 4s by 7 wickets as they chased down 189 in 32 overs at the Roseburn Artificial.  In last season’s meeting at Arboretum Euan Murray was skipper for the day and lost the toss and the home side chose to field first.  A solid display with the bat saw the 5s post a more than respectable 183 for 7 from their 40 overs.  Shreyas Tekale (18); Dougie Scott (21); Martin Robertson (21) all got starts but Aadi Khadse (41*) was the mainstay of the batting performance who also found good support from John Gill (27) down the order.  A fine start with the ball saw both openers removed for ducks by Lewis Broster & Hamish Turner.  The home side recovered and a solid 3rd wicket partnership was broken by Rahul Khadse.  Gill then claimed a wicket and Tekale removed the dangerous No 3 to shift the fortunes back in favour of the Arrows.  The opening bowlers came back and there were 2 more wickets for Broster and 1 for Turner plus a runout as the 5s restricted Holy Cross to 175 for 9 from their 40 overs to set up a victory by 8 runs.


On Sunday the Arrows will welcome West of Scotland to Grange Loan for a Scottish Cup round one tie.  Last year West finished in 2nd place in the Western Premiership One.  In the 2023 edition of the Scottish Cup, the Arrows lost to Grange in the QF whilst the visitors were knocked out in round 1 by Meigle at Hamilton Crescent.