Selkirk secured promotion to Division Five of the East of Scotland League thanks to a mighty 201 run victory over Marchmont 2nd XI at Philiphaugh on Saturday. Victory in their final two games will ensure the Souters are promoted as champions at the end of a successful first season in the new league set-up.
While Selkirk’s bowlers have often led the way this year, on Saturday it was the batsmen’s turn to shine. Skipper John Everitt was married last week – and so, shamefully, missed the defeat at Dunbar that is still the only blemish on Selkirks’ otherwise spotless record this season – but returned to flay the Marchmont bowling as he registered his second century of the season. By common consent his 115* was his best innings of the year.
Marchmont, it is true, were hampered by the late arrival of two of their players but, despite their best efforts, they struggled to make headway against some determined and skilful batting. Everitt and Greg Fenton took Selkirk past 50 and were largely untroubled until Fenton, on 29, slapped a drive to extra cover.
Andrew Rathie, however, proved a more than adequate replacement. Making his first appearance of the season, Rathie soon showed Selkirk’s stalwart supporters what they have been missing in his absence. After a slow start he began to punish the Marchmont bowling, being especially severe on anything short and on the leg-side.
At the other end, Everitt’s innings was a near-chanceless model of economy, concentration and good sense. Indeed, it seemed as though only a run-out could terminate his innings abruptly. For the rest of it, he batted with great authority in an innings that coupled aggressive running between the wickets with an astute balance between attack and defence. A number of trademark drives were highlights but the Yorkshireman’s most impressive quality was his control of pace and tempo as he batted for the full 45 overs.
After Rathie had been caught at point for 54, Massie arrived to offer Everitt some support as the home side cantered past 200 and set a total that looked to be on the stiff side of challenging.
This duly proved the case as Selkirk’s medium-pace attack made inroads. If Ramachandra was perhaps slightly unfortunate to be adjudged LBW, his colleagues were undone by some typically accurate Selkirk bowling. Granger, Marchmont’s leading run-scorer assisted Selkirk no end when he suffered the ignominy of being run out off a wide – a direct hit from Jordan Reid removing Marchmont’s greatest threat.
With Marchmont’s first five wickets falling with the score on 0, 1, 2, 10 and 13 respectively it was clear a Selkirk victory could not be long delayed. The visitors stuck doggedly to their task, however, guarding their wickets fiercely even if this came at the expense of offering any counter-attacking threat. Selkirk’s victory could not be long delayed, however, especially since Burgen was unfit to bat following an injury sustained while fielding. Malcolm Ford and Iain Gardiner duly mopped up the tail to secure the victory and promotion for the home side.
Selkirk vs Marchmont:
Selkirk won the toss and elected to bat.
J Everitt* Not Out 115
G Fenton ct Ramachandra b Burgen 29
A Rathie ct F Sheikh b Granger 54
A Massie Not Out 24
K Paterson DNB
J Reid DNB
J Graham+ DNB
C Shand DNB
I Gardiner DNB
K Murray DNB
M Ford DNB
Bowling: Burgen 9-1-47-1, F Sheikh 9-0-68-0, Ramachandra 9-1-38-0, Marrr 9-3-28-0, Grander 9-0-54-1
H Ramachandra LBW b Paterson 0
L Healy+ b G Fenton 3
F Sheikh ct G Fenton b Reid
N Granger Run Out 0
J McConnachie* Not Out 9
H Sheikh b G Fenton 2
H Saleem ct G Fenton b Ford 4
S Marr ct Rathie b Ford 2
J Flockhart b Gardiner 0
Burgen Absent Injured
Total: 33 All Out
Bowling: Paterson 5-3-3-1, Reid 6-4-3-1, G Fenton 4-2-5-2, Gardiner 5.2-0-13-1, Ford 3-1-8-2