CRICKET: Greenock Face Stern Test Against Renfrewshire Rivals

12 May, 2023 | Sport

GREENOCK host high-flying Renfrewshire rivals Ferguslie on Saturday as the side continues to look for its first win.

The Paisley club are unbeaten in both of their Western Premiership One league matches and were also victorious in their first round Scottish Cup tie last Sunday against Stirling County CC. The match at Glenpark will therefore be a very stern test for Greenock.

Ferguslie were last season’s Premier Division winners and also won the Champions’ play-off against Edinburgh side, Heriots CC, who were winners of the Eastern Premier Division. Ferguslie’s win saw them ‘crowned’ the top side in Scotland for 2022.

The Meikleriggs team is a strong one but perhaps not invincible. In the Scottish Cup tie against Stirling County, Ferguslie lost six wickets as they chased and overcame County’s low score of 84 runs.

And in the league it has not all been plain sailing. In their opening match against West of Scotland at Hamilton Crescent, the home side were bowled out for 117 after just 35 overs, but Ferguslie lost seven wickets as they chased down their target in 28 overs.

However, last Saturday at Meikleriggs, a very strong performance saw the Paisley team win convincingly against the much-fancied Prestwick CC who were runners-up in the Premier Division last summer. Ferguslie scored 196 for 7 in their innings and then bowled out Prestwick for 145 in 41 overs.

The Paisley team’s professional is Mohammed Mayat. He has played cricket in the Bradford area and is an opening batsman but has not made a big impact in the matches to date. Mayat is also a bowler and led the Ferguslie attack against West taking 3 wickets for 38 runs from 8 overs.

Saturday’s visitors will provide a strong bowling line-up, a number of whom are well known to the Greenock team. Adil Ghaffar, Haroon Tahir, Daoud Tahir and Taimoor Ahmad have all played against Greenock in recent seasons and will aim to make time at the crease challenging for the Glenpark batsmen.

Greenock have not made the start to the league programme which had been hoped for by both players and supporters.

In the opening match away at Dumfries, the Glenparkers came close to getting a winning result but last Saturday against Ayr, Greenock were outplayed in all areas of the game.

Greenock make a number of changes. Into the team come Harry Briggs, Shailesh Prabhu, Aryan Sanghera and Sam Sanghera all of whom were unavailable last weekend. Top scoring batsman Tom Polkinghorne is unavailable because of work which is a big loss.

Briggs and Prabhu in particular should add some strength to the batting line-up while Aryan and Sam Sanghera will offer some bowling options.

Team line-up: GJ McDougall, HR Briggs, CS Calder, GM Chambers, RR Dalal, LC Fischer-Keogh, N Nagaraju, CS Pandher, SS Prabhu, AS Sanghera, SS Sanghera. Scorer: R McGregor The match will start at noon.

Greenock’s 2nd XI (Glenpark) have a 100 per cent record in their league with wins in both of their opening matches against Blackhill and Galloway. This Saturday the team travels to Glasgow to play Glasgow Accies 2nd XI (Anniesland) at their New Anniesland ground. The team will be: S Chaudhary (Capt), M Ahmadzai, PJ Bryceland, A Farooq, CJK Hempsey, U Mansoor, E Norris, H Safi, S Safi, DC Sharma, EA Stewart. The match will start at 1pm

On Sunday, a Greenock XI (‘Hillend XI’) travels to the west end of Glasgow to play a Hillhead XI in a friendly match at Hughenden. The team will include: GJ McDougall, M Ahmadzai, PJ Bryceland, CS Calder, I Khan, U Mansoor, N Nagaraju, H Safi, S Safi, EA Stewart. The match is scheduled to start at 1pm.

Greenock Cricket Club is sponsored by Cleaning Supplies 4U

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