A Black, Humbling Day

Selkirk’s 2nd XI were humbled by Melrose at Philiphaugh on Sunday, a result which severely damages the Philiphaugh outfit’s hopes of retaining the Border Reserve League title. Realistically Selkirk must win each of their final three fixtures, starting with Sunday’s match against Kelso, if they are to have any chance of topping the end of season table.

Batting first in overcast but warm conditions Selkirk posted a total of 146/9 from their 40 overs. This seemed a more than defensible total bearing in mind that Selkirk had enjoyed a comfortable victory at Melrose earlier in the season.

Certainly few people, least of all the Selkirk players, expected Melrose to canter to a nine wicket victory with 12 overs to spare. Some slapdash fielding and errant bowling certainly helped Melrose on their way and the visitors – notably Kyle Paisley – enjoyed repeated slices of good fortune but Selkirk could have no complaints about the final result. Paisley, indeed, demonstrated an astonishing repertoire of Chinese cuts, sclaffs and mistimed pulls that annoyed Selkirk no end and made it clear that, even before he was twice dropped, it as not to be Selkirk’s day.

Furqan and Paisley had got Melrose off to a flying start before the former was trapped LBW by Bryson for 29. Nevertheless at 65/1 Selkirk needed quick wickets to regain the initiative. Alas these proved elusive a Ross McLennan composed a classy innings of 41 that, in partnership with Paisley’s successful heaving and swiping 66, saw Melrose home with ease.

Earlier it had looked rather better for Selkirk as, led by Ranald Wilkie’s second half century of the season, they posted a perfectly respectable total. After a slow start from Graham and Fairbairn, Wilkie got into his stride, hitting five 4s and a 6 en route to a splendid innings of 66. He was given excellent support by Gordon Branston (23) and young Macaulley [correct] Hislop (9) in particular and these were the three stand-out contributions to a team performance that seemed, for a while, to have put Selkirk in a good position for victory.

All in all this was a bleak, bleak weekend for Selkirk cricket as in two matches the opposition racked up an eye-watering, foot-wearying 460/5. An experience, frankly, that no-one connected to the club wishes to endure again.

Selkirk vs Melrose, Border Reserve League. Selkirk won the toss and chose to bat. Melrosewon by nine wickets.

Selkirk Innings:

J Graham        ct Adams b Jessop 3
C Fairbairn        stumped b Loftus 6
G Branston        ct McLennan b S Hosny 23
R Wilkie        b S Hosny 66
A Massie*        ct A Hosny b S Hosny
M Hislop        b Loftus 9
R Price        Run Out 4
R Banks+        b Loftus 15
B Amos        ct Mclennan b Paisley 1
M Branston         Not Out 1
J Bryson        Not Out 0

Extras: 16
Total: 146/9 (40 Overs)

Bowling: Loftus 8-1-24-3, Jessop 8-2-15-1, Furqan 8-2-24-0, Rhatigan 2-0-17-0, S Hosny 8-1-34-3, Ward 4-0-17-0, Paisley 2-0-12-1

Melrose Innings:

Furqan        LBW b Bryson 29
K Paisley        Not Out 66
R McLennan        Not Out 41

Extras: 11
Total: 149/1

Bowling: Amos 5-0-25-0, Graham 6-0-27-0, Bryson 4-0-18-1, Wilkie 6-0-35-0, G Branston 5-0-29-0, Banks 1.2-0-7-0

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