|Posted by Cheezy on May 27, 2012 at 5:35 PM|
Dunnikier, the Forth Cricket Union 2011 Champions, were finally able to get the defence of their title underway on Sunday against West Lothian.
Playing their first game of the season, the Kirkcaldy team have struggled for player numbers over the last few weeks, and this was to be their undoing again as only seven players were able to travel to Linlithgow.
With guest player Ken Thomson from the home club helping out, Dunnikier were grateful to captain for the day Nic Krzyzanowski winning the toss and choosing to bat under sweltering conditions.
The opening pair of Sandhu and Naeem started positively, and it was somewhat of a surpise to see Sandhu, with his distinctive left hand batting with no gloves and his hands reversed, bowled by Holdsworth for 5.
This brought Raza to the crease, and he and Naeem chose to dig in and bat out as many overs as possible. With the home team captain Newman chosing to regularly rotate his bowlers, the batsmen were able to pick of runs fairly easily.
With Raza picking up the singles and Naeem going for the boundaries, their 50 partnership came up in the 14th over. With more positive running the score would have moved on quicker, and it was perhaps tiredness that was to ultimately be their undoing as first Naeem fell LBW for 25 to returning opening bowler Stratchan then soon followed by Haza bowled by a looping slow ball, again by Strachan, for 31.
Despite a cameo 11 by Sarfraz Mahmood, the old adage of one brings two continued to apply as Dunnikier lost the rest of their wickets fairly quickly to be bowled all out for 96 after 23 of the 30 overs.
In response, Mahmood and Birendra Kumar opened the bowling for Dunnikier and bowled with good intent in extracting swing and seam out of the pitch. Unfortunately the lack of fielders meant the mis-hits from the opening batsmen more often than not fell in to gaps and the scoreboard ticked over regularly.
It was to be a change of bowlers that brought a change in luck, as the twin spin attack of Raza and Libin Thomas made the double breakthrough with first Raza bowling Andy Newman for 20 and then Thomas doing the same next over to Chris Newman for 23. At 47 for 2 from 10 overs, West Lothian were well placed though their desire to push for runs quickly was regularly giving Dunnikier the chance to continue the fight.
Ken Thomson, bowling with good pace, was able to continue the trend and make an early breakthrough in his spell seeing McNab caught by wicket keeper Krzyzanowski for 12.
The introduction of Sandhu was to change the context of the game, bowling his left arm wrist spin around the wicket and placing confusion amongst the batsmen regularly. Napoli, having shown a willingness to hit across the line, was well thought out after the invite to hit through the off-side was taken on only to hit a catch to be taken well by Mahmood at extra cover.
Sandhu was to take a second wicket, bowling the left-handed Holdsworth for 10 after any number of close misses around his outside edge. Unfortunately for Dunnikier that was as close as they were to get, as young Ryan Thomson, son of the Dunnikier guest Ken, was to bat well to finish 5 not out and see West Lothian through to the winning total of 97 for 5 after 22.3 overs.
So defeat for Dunnikier, though many positives to take away particularly with the application shown by all the bowlers and fielders. With eleven players Dunnikier should be pushing for victories in the league so here's hoping for more luck with player availability in the coming weeks. A big thanks to Ken Thomson from West Lothian for guesting for the day with enthusiasm and no little skill.
Dunnikier 96 all out (Raza 31, Naeem 25)
West Lothian 97-5 (Sandhu 2 for 12 from 4.3, Thomson 1 for 16 from 4, Raza 1 for 17 from 4, Thomas 1 for 18 from 2)