Carlton skipper asks team to bottle up winning feeling

Michael Castle
Michael Castle
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Carlton player/coach Michael Castle wants the younger players in the team to remember the contrasting emotions they felt last weekend and use them to kick on and have a successful June.

In week two of the summer, after Carlton had defeated Watsonians in the CSL Eastern Premier Division, fellow experienced player Rory McCann challenged the young cricketers to play like that consistently.

Over the last month or so, however, there have been highs and lows.

Last Saturday was the low point of 2018 to date when they lost at home to previously winless Stewart’s Melville by 11 runs.

On Sunday the team managed to turn things around though, 85 from Australian Castle, 61 from Tom Simpson and four wickets for Arun Pillai seeing them win at Glenrothes and get through to the last eight of the Citylets Scottish Cup.

Ahead of tomorrow’s road trip to Aberdeenshire in the top flight, 28-year-old all-rounder Castle wants team-mates to bottle up that winning feeling from Fife and use it to move them up the table from seventh.

“The Glenrothes win was much needed on Sunday and I was really pleased with the way Tom batted and the way that the boys stuck in overall,” Castle said. “On Saturday after the Stew-Mel match the guys were very low, they couldn’t believe that we had lost it, but cricket is full of highs and lows and as you get older you get better at keeping emotions in check.

“In the month or so that I have been in Edinburgh I have been impressed by the players in our first XI while there are others doing good things for the second XI, it is just about performing consistently.

“With Stew-Mel having now got a win under their belts we know the next few weeks are crucial to helping us move away from the bottom end of things and any potential relegation worries.”

Having missed the first few weeks of the season, Castle arrived in the Capital during May with an impressive CV which included a couple of years playing league cricket in Kent.

To date on the pitch he has impressed with bat and ball for Carlton while he has also turned out for the Eastern Knights. “My wife and I have greatly enjoyed Edinburgh so far and the people at Carlton have been very welcoming. The aim now is to get a few more wins under our belts and put smiles on faces,” he concluded.

With Ali Evans on Scotland duty, Arun Pillai will captain Carlton at Mannofield.

Leaders Mazars Grange have eight changes in their XI to face Arbroath at Lochlands.

Scott Blain, Ryan Flannigan, Andrew Brock, Harris Carnegie, Andrew Appleton, Stuart Davidson, Jamie Cairns and John Blain come in.

Those missing include Scotland players Preston Mommsen and Dylan Budge. Andrew Brock captains Grange while former England bowler Ryan Sidebottom is not involved a yet.

Heriot’s are in second and welcome Watsonians to Goldenacre for an Edinburgh derby.

With Ryan Brown injured and Calum McDougall out, David Ross and Craig Mackellar come into the home XI.

The visitors travel across town without their unavailable skipper Ewan Chalmers.

Brendan O’Connell will lead a side that sees Andrew Fraser-Harris coming in for a 50th league appearance along with Andrew Cockburn, Olly Brown and Tom Pratt. George Munsey is on Scotland duty.

RH Corstophine sit sixth and welcome Forfarshire to East Barnton Avenue.

Robert Taylor, Calum Clarkson and Jamie Coombes come into Joe Kinghorn-Gray’s team with Sam Flett, Kevin Meier and Richard McCorkell are out.

Stewart’s Melville will be keen to build on the win over Carlton last time out, but their team that will take on Glenrothes in Fife shows a lot of changes.

Captain Greg Ruthven is out with Steven Parker taking up the leadership role while Greg Bissett and a number of second XI players are called upon for this important match.