Charlie MacLeod shines as Heriot’s triumph at SMRH

Mazars Grange skipper Andrew Brock shows off the Masterton Trophy, which was clinched in dramatic style against Carlton with a three-wicket win with six balls to spare
Mazars Grange skipper Andrew Brock shows off the Masterton Trophy, which was clinched in dramatic style against Carlton with a three-wicket win with six balls to spare
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Heriot’s coach Steve Knox has given the seal of approval to a potential new star on the Eastern Cricket Premiership scene after Charlie MacLeod debuted behind the stumps in a record-breaking win at SMRH.

Although Heriot’s had to be content with victory under the Duckworth/Lewis method of adjudicating rain-affected matches, a target of 274 all out in the last of their allocated 50 overs was the highest in the competition this season.

“We actually could have got more runs had we not lost our way a bit in the middle order,” said Knox, adding: “In all the years I have been visiting Inverleith that was the best wicket I have played on.”

A strong wag of the tail in which Ryan Brown (33) and Mark Watt (20) put on 56 for the ninth wicket revived Heriot’s and in reply SMRH stood 183-4, which was 14 behind the D/L requirement.

“Watty is always badgering captain Cammy Farrell to get pushed up the order and in that respect he put a bit of pressure on our No.8 batsman,” said Knox.

In fact, spinner Watt’s task has just become harder after the arrival of MacLeod, of whom Knox said: “Charlie was at school in Kent with James Hearne and a colleague of another of our players, Peter Ross, at Leeds MCC University.

“He is Scottish qualified and has moved north in search of representative recognition.

“That journey started recently when he turned out for a Scottish development X1 and I think he can go a lot further.

“Both with the bat and with the gloves, Charlie looks well organised and he got his chance with [Australian amateur] Max Papworth working his way back from a broken finger.”

Knox himself got among the runs with 40 out of an opening stand of 76 with David Ross who went on to make 58 – his highest league score this season.

“David has such a lot of talent and when he concentrates for longer periods the runs come more easily to him. He played his shots at the right time and was well worth his half century.”

For SMRH, Robin Crouch and pro Brad Moses each claimed three wickets.

At stumps Moses, seeking to top score for the fourth successive league match, was unbeaten on 32.

Earlier, opener Martin Spiers made 65 off 81 balls before becoming Charlie MacLeod’s first victim when stumped.

Stephen Parker was run out for 32 when it was obvious SMRH were falling behind the clock and Greg Ruthven was unbeaten on 31 following Tom Beattie’s departure having given a straightforward return catch to spinner Mark Watt.

Mazars Grange skipper Andrew Brock believes his third- placed side still have the capability to leapfrog front runners Aberdeenshire and Arbroath after a remarkable comeback to win at Watsonians under the D/L.

Put into bat, Grange found themselves 4-3, but a partnership of 57 between Henry Edwards (39) and Gordon Goudie (25) and another of 28 from tail-enders Raj Routray (15no) and Chris Sole (30 no) meant a “reasonable” total of 185, according to Brock.

In fact, 18-year-old Tom Sole, on only his third league appearance, had an invaluable 28 going in at No 4 and Brock feels both he and 20-year-old brother Chris will soon be pushing for higher honours.

“The way Tom handled the pace of Dewald Nel was particularly impressive and Chris is knocking on the door for a move up our batting order,” said Brock. “If we win all our remaining games then we could still be in the title hunt.”

For Watsonians, Mike Carson had an unbeaten 52, but a 116-6 total was after 34 overs was 16 runs behind the D/L rate

At Grange Loan Carlton never really looked competitive against champions Arbroath.

A flurry of early wickets saw Hamish Gardiner having to graft for 63 runs to get the hosts back in the game but a total of 167 was always fragile.

Led by a century from Brendan Ford the Red Lichties cruised home with 10 overs to spare and only four wickets down.