Fraserburgh CC welcomed Grade 1 table topping Ellon on Saturday, looking to continue their momentum from last week victory.
For a 3rd week running, captain Fraser Lawrance won the toss and elected to field to bowl first on a very green looking East Links pitch and proceedings began well, with opening bowlers Lawrance and Colin Souter looking in fine form.
It was Souter who claimed the initial breakthrough, getting Ellon captain Scott White to glove one through to Lawrance at slip for a duck. Lawrance than cleaned bowled Veldmans for 7, and when Souter bowled Craig White for 2, things were looking good for Fraserburgh, with Ellon on 32-3.
However, Chris Watson and Ben Webbsaw off Lawrance and Souter and 1st change bowlers Liam Bowie and Mark Witt had no initial success and runs started to come by easier for Ellon.
Mark Witt managed to get Webb caught by Souter for 13, however Tom Proctor came to the crease and helped Watson to increase the score more until Cory Bowie came onto the bowl, to turn Ellon’s innings on its head.
Onto the bowl, to turn Ellon’s innings on its head. In his 2nd over Cory Bowie got Watson out LBW for a well played 49 and the clean bowled Richard Greenfield for a golden duck and then had Hamish Paterson caught by Lawrance, for a 2-ball duck. Then Bowie bowled Proctor in his next over, for 28, to leave Ellon on 94-8.
Mark White and Charles George managed to stem the flow of wickets and help Ellon got to a decent score before Souter came back on to get them both out.
George bowled for 9, and M.White caught by Liam Bowie for 14, leaving Ellon on 130 all out. Souter finishing on an impressive 4-16 and Cory Bowie 4-24.
After the break, Fraserburgh started their run chase with Cory Bowie and Michael Watson facing up first to the Ellon attack.
The pair started off well, giving Ellon’s new ball pair Scott white and Greenfield nothing in return but steady defence. They gradually got the score to 37 before a change of bowling brought the first wicket. Watson drove loosely and was caught and bowled by Webb for 14 before Bowie sliced a cut to Craig White at point for 17. This left Paul O’Neill and Lawrance at the crease, with O’Neill looking in fine form with a couple of boundaries of Webb in the same over.
However, when he got bowled by Webb for 16, this started a collapse in Fraserburgh’s batting line up. And it was Webb who was the chief destroyer, removing Stuart Flowerdew for a duck, caught a slip, bowling Liam Bowie for 2, getting Garry O’Neill LBW for 0, and then Craig Parkin caught and bowled for another duck, to collect a 6-wicket haul for 28 runs, leaving Fraserburgh on 71-7.
In a repeat of the Ellon’s innings,Lawrance and Souter stopped the wickets falling for a while, however in trying to up the scoring brought about their downfall. Lawrance made 17, before edging to gully off Mark White and Souter got bowled by a returning Greenfield. And when Mark Witt was LBW to Scott White this brought the end of the game with Fraserburgh all out for 83.
A missed chance to collect a major scalp in grade 1, and results elsewhere mean the team drop down to the relegation zone, however this game happened to be the 4th time in a row that Fraserburgh has managed to bowl a team out in grade 1, which only victors Ellon can boost in doing in all of the 4 leagues throughout the Aberdeenshire Grades.
Saturday is another home game in the Broch against Knightriders, who sit one place above Fraserburgh, outside the relegation places in the league, with only 2% separating the team at this early stage of the season.