After a cancelled match last week, the Glenrothes 2nd XI were itching for a game, and to Leith Links we went with high hopes and plenty of jerseys in the kit bags.
A historic ground with a path running across the pitch and a sunny day, the lads arrived in good time and ready to open our East of Scotland Cricket Association Division Seven season.
Team photos, done. A Churchillean speech done, warm up and stretches...erm, we forgot that bit.
Nonetheless the Skipper Ally Sim, armed with the advice of Ross Mearns to make sure he called heads, promptly did so, and promptly lost the toss and the Glens were put into bat.
Not a train smash as we has a potentially strong batting line up on the day.
Ally Sim and Kristopher Glen took to the middle and made a positive start, running at more than 5 an over for the first 10 overs, with big Kris smashing a good few boundaries along the way, including a dislocated thumb for FAB’s Sillar whilst stopping a blast straight back at him.
Luckily there was a doctor available on the other pitch, a proctologist unfortunately, but after a few muted screams from the clubhouse and a discarded rubber glove, the thumb was more or less back in place, double ouch.
In the 14th over, the Skipper mistimed a short one and was caught for 17 - Kris still going great guns though.
This brought Asghar Ali to the crease in his debut game for the Glens, and with Kris they continued to push the score forward to 107, before Kris fell on an excellent 71 - a really attacking innings from the big fella.
Andy McAulay to the crease, and after a period of consolidation and a few well timed bowling changes from Nathan Dicks, the FAB skip, the run rate was beginning to drop slightly.
Asghar fell on 26 to a sharp stumping, and Andy was struggling with the lack of pace from the accurate FAB bowlers, they were not making life easy for the Glens on a real front foot pitch.
A one handed wonder catch from Jagolar saw Andy McAulay heading back to the pavillion muttering that it was ‘typical to be out on the only feckin ball I’d middled..’ This was followed by a brief couple of cameos from Andy Muir and Ross Mearns who also struggled with the lack of pace and went for 9 and 5 respectively.
Another debutant, Mehmood Khan, the brother of 1st XI stalwart Farooq...and to be fair that the family connection was clearly in evidence as Mehmood almost wrapped the bat around his neck on his first ball - this was going to be interesting.
Three hits later, and 18 runs later...Mehmood was out after a very entertaining flurry of sixes. Mental.
Gouldy demonstrated his usual ‘heart in the mouth, please play forward on a low pitch’ kind of innings and added a useful 8, wrapping up the innings on 179 all out after 45 overs.
A decent score, but one that might have been a lot higher if the top order momentum could have been maintained.
With a full team of bowlers to choose from, it was Gary McAulay andMalcolm Neil whom opened the bowling from the Glens with what seemed to be a decent total to defend.
Both guys found their line and length quickly and after 11 overs FAB were four wickets down for 29. A great start.
Onto the return of Robert ‘Bod’ Hutchison, who after a few years out of the game was keen to impress, and impress he did with some excellent, accurate left arm bowling - his 5 over spell giving up only 8 runs and a well deserved wicket.
Club Spinner Rossco Mearns, found a good length in his six overs and was unlucky not to take a wicket on the day - more to come in the season ahead to be sure.
With each bowling change directed by the Skipper, each one of the guys Kris, Asghar and Andy Mac all did their job, taking a wicket each.
The pick of the bunch though was a three over spell at the end from Mehmood Kan, who ran up and immediately bowled a great line and length with 2 wickets for no runs... a great effort.
All in all, a good team effort from the Glens to wrap up the FAB innings on 102 and a good chance for the skipper to see what is what in a season that will surely bring hard selection choices to make.