Dunnikier Cricket Club 1st XI, at the third time of asking, eventually managed to beat the weather and played their first game of the season away to West Lothian 1st XI on Saturday – and what a game it turned out to be.
Captain Ashgar Ali lost the toss and the opposition inserted Dunnikier to bat first on a rather soft looking track.
Opening batsman Steve Rowley, who was prolific in his run scoring last season, failed to trouble the scorers and was out for a duck in the second over, caught at gulley.
Tariq Aziz came in at three and put on a 30 partnership with the free scoring Arfan Yousaf, who fell for 25.
Safraz Mohammed was next in at four and hung around with Aziz who made 19 but was caught at mid-off playing an expansive drive.
Asim was playing his first game for Dunnikier and his innings of 34 was pivitol as wickets began to fall at regular intervals.
Dunnikier at 103 for six wickets succumbed to the opposition’s bowling and were 120 all out, in the 40th over, 10 overs short of their allotted 50.
With the pitch still pretty soft, Dunnikier knew if they bowled tight, and used the pitch to their advantage, they might manage an unlikely victory.
Massood Fareed and Babar Shazad opened the bowling for Dunnikier with Masood making the early break through, removing West Lothian opener, Drylie for two with the score at 7.
West Lothian began to toil at the crease finding it difficult to score of the Dunnikier bowling.
A cluster of wickets fell and West Lothian found themselves 47 for four after 28 overs mainly due to some excellent catching from the Dunnikier fielders.
Dunnikier were now in with a great chance of victory, however, West Lothian had other ideas.
Opener Strachan was still in, and gradually started amassing runs with partner Raven, all be it very slowly.
With the score now at 99 and a 50 partnership on tow, Dunnikier made the breakthrough as Massood clean bowled Strachan for 40 in the 44th over.
The equation showed that West Lothian now needed 22 runs off six overs with five wickets remaining.
The next wicket fell at 108, leaving 13 runs required off four overs, with four wickets remaining.
West Lothian looking like favourites? Not according to bowler Tariq Aziiz and the Dunnikier fielders as Tariq stepped up to the plate and dismissed two batsmen in his first over with Safraz dismissing the dangerous Raven, coolly taken by Arman for 36.
The score was now 116 for nine in the 50th and last over and when Aziz clean bowled the last West Lothian batsman, Dunnikier were elated to win the game by four runs and take the full 20 points, a great start to the season.
Catches win matches and there were seven in all for the Dunnikier players. This week Dunnikier 1st XI host Herriot Watt Cricket Club.
There was another good win for Dunnikier 2nd XI against Dalgety Bay winning with one wicket left, with 12-year-old Christopher Westwood hitting the winning run.
Senior practise is on Tuesday night as always from 6.00 to 8.00 p.m.
The Under 13s are at home to Broomhall tomorrow (Friday). Players should be at the ground for 5.45 p.m sharp. The 2nd XI are away to MDAFs.