No dream ending for Largo cricketers

Largo CC bowler Ryan Brown
Largo CC bowler Ryan Brown

With a wicket which was as dry as a bone and likely to deteriorate during the day, winning the toss and batting first was the priority for both captains.

Naveen Rajagopal in action at the weekend.

Naveen Rajagopal in action at the weekend.

Largo skipper Kinnear lost, and Largo had to field first.

Largo got off to a good start with both Marchmont openers dismissed with the score on 25 in the seventh over, thanks to tight bowling by Gillin and Bentley.

This brought Rees and the usually prolific scorer Matt Loeffen together. The pair looked fairly well set until spinner Brown took a good return catch, to see Loeffen go for 25, 73 for 3 after 17 overs.

This prompted a mini-collapse with Rees(31) following soon after caught by Brown from the bowling of Scott, Collier(2) caught Warrender bowled Rintoul and Ahmed(0) caught and bowled Scott. Marchmont were six wickets down for 95.

However, the big hitting Van Jaarsveld and Maksimczyk added 54 for the next wicket, with Van Jaarsveld clubbing eight fours and a six before being comprehensively bowled by Brown for 47.

Brown also accounted for Maksimczyk(17) with Rintoul and Bentley picking up the final wickets seeing Marchmont 172 all out after 41 overs.

This was a good effort by the Largo bowlers on a pitch where even half-hit shots seemed to fly for four across the lightening fast outfield.

Brown with 3 for 22 from his 10 overs was again the pick of the bowlers.

Chasing even a relatively modest total of 173 was never going to be easy on this wicket, and when Warrender was bowled by Loeffen for two in the first over, the task got even harder.

However, Rintoul and Brown built a solid partnership of 67 based on Rintoul’s belligerent hitting and Brown’s classic shots until Rintoul was caught for 40 from the bowling of Sardesai. Brown(14) followed soon after, bringing the Ali brothers to the crease.

Both made solid starts, but were unable to build on these – Nadeem being particularly unlucky being out hit wicket trying to dispatch the Marchmont spinner Sardesai with the score 114 for five after 28 overs. This suddenly became 120 for eight as Rees removed Kinnear, Coates and Gillin in a two over spell for 0 runs.

Rajagopal, not out 24 at this point, was joined by Bentley and the pair started to edge the score closer to the 173 required with both playing sensible shots and causing a considerable degree of panic in the Marchmont ranks.

The possibility of a dream ending for Largo came to a close when Bentley was bowled by Granger for 18 with the score on 165 for nine.

Last man in, Scott, in attempting to block out the next ball popped it up for the bowler to take a return catch high over his head to leave the score 165 all out and Rajagopal not out for a fine 47.

A hugely disappointing result, having got so close to what looked at one point to be an unlikely win.

The firsts play West Lothian at East Drive on Saturday and the club hold their annual sixes on Sunday where players from all of the club’s four teams come together in a frenetic, fun competition.