In the same week as the club hosted a successful festival for primary school pupils around the area, the first team couldn’t quite get over the finishing line in their league encounter with Stoneywood-Dyce.
Fraserburgh’s captain Mark Ironside won the toss and entrusted his bowlers to open with a bang. Early on, it looked as though that would be the case, as Jamie Clark took 2 wickets inside the first 6 overs. But they came at too high a cost for Fraserburgh’s liking, as Clark and Shiraz Amin at the other end conceded 59 runs in the first 10 overs alone. That statistic saw Alan Rennie replace the expensive Clark with a great deal of success. Although he didn’t take a wicket, his excellently economical bowling – the batsmen only scored 16 runs in total from his 12 overs – swung the momentum back in Fraserburgh’s favour. Rennie, Amin and later Chris Gospel couldn’t make the breakthrough though, and so Stoneywood slowly managed to build a partnership that was only broken around the 20th over when a good piece of work in the field by Amin succeeded in running out the batsman. Gospel eventually got his wicket through a good appeal for lbw, before Amin tore through the tail-end, taking the final 4 wickets and taking his tally for the season to 12 wickets in 3 matches.
Regular openers Cory Bowie and Garry O’Neill took their usual places at the crease, the latter after having filled in as wicket-keeper to mixed success. That he was tired after his exertions in the field is an understatement, and his fatigue was clear for all to see as he was out stumped for 9 in an effort he will not feel did himself justice, despite passing the hundred-run landmark for the club. At the other end Bowie was showing no signs of similar problems, as he typically started quickly (including hitting a four back over the bowler’s head in just his second over) in an effort to reach the target of 155 to win. After O’Neill’s departure, Mark Ironside walked out to the middle for what proved to be a fruitful partnership. It was during this partnership that Bowie passed 50 with one of his eleven boundaries in the innings. Cracks in the batting side started to show when Ironside was trapped lbw on 27, and Fraser Lawrance followed the next ball, having been caught for a golden duck. Even then though, Fraserburgh had passed 100 and with 6 wickets in hand it looked as though they would still go on to record a comfortable victory. That all changed when Bowie – so often the talisman this season – was caught and departed on 60. Trying to get those final runs, Amin (5) and Gospel (19) were both run out, while Clark was caught on 7. This only left the tail-enders to get the remaining runs, but they were not able to do so. Will Ramsay was out lbw for 0, and an injured Rennie was unfortunate to have one come back in and clip the stumps, leaving Andrew Henderson stranded on 3 not out and Fraserburgh just 14 runs short of the total required for victory.
It had all looked so promising for Fraserburgh, but an alarming batting collapse when they were so near to victory means that they were very disappointed to have lost a game they would have expected to win. They will look to pick themselves up for next week when they make the trip to the league leaders Dunecht.