Ali shines for Carlton before the Evans open at Myreside

Carlton bowler Ali Evans celebrates a wicket at Myreside. Pic: Toby Williams
Carlton bowler Ali Evans celebrates a wicket at Myreside. Pic: Toby Williams
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Ali Evans and his Carlton team-mates were left cursing Saturday’s rain after a heavy mid-afternoon downpour at Myreside left them unable to complete what would have been a thumping CSL Eastern Premier Division win over Watsonians.

Carlton went into the derby match with just two league wins for the season so far, but were on top form from the first ball to really put their hosts in trouble.

Having won the toss and decided to bowl, Carlton’s Scotland seamer Evans quickly removed Sonians’ Ben Fox and key man Ewan Chalmers to leave the home side, missing a few players due to unavailability, on 6-2.

When former Watsonians captain Gordon Drummond, now leading Carlton, had Dewald Nel caught for 20 it was 32-3 and the home batsmen never really recovered from there.

Three of the remaining batters recorded ducks while, after Nel’s 20, the next highest score was 16 from young Fraser Sands as they were skittled out for 98. Evans was the standout bowler for Carlton with 6-19 from 11 overs and at times he was simply unplayable.

Drummond took two wickets and overseas amateur Tom Freshwater and the ever-reliable Omar Ahmad also got in on the act with one scalp apiece.

With the clouds above Myreside darkening, the Carlton batsmen knew they had to get a move on with things in their reply.

Former Scotland man Fraser Watts did just that and he reached 37 not out in very quick time. He had lost opening partner Freshwater early, out for six off the bowling of Mike Legget, but, at 53-1 from eight overs they were coasting to victory.

That was when the rain came, though, and with ten overs of the second innings having to be bowled to constitute a match, things were abandoned by the umpires leaving Carlton frustrated.

All other Capital clubs in the top flight saw their matches curtailed at a similar time of day.

Heriot’s teenage spinner Mark Watt had taken three wickets to help bowl Falkland out for just 139 at Scroggie Park before that game ended while SMRH were 78-3 at home to Arbroath. Mazars Grange were 143-6 against Autoecosse Forfarshire in Stockbridge with Chris Sole 38 not out.

Stoneywood-Dyce beat Aberdeenshire in the only completed match. In the Baillie Gifford ESCA Championship, it was a similarly wet story, five matches starting, but none finishing.