Heriot’s cricketers aiming to repeat feat of 40 years ago

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This Sunday, Heriot’s cricketers will be looking to win the Citylets Scottish Cup for the fourth time in the club’s history – almost exactly 40 years to the day since their first triumph in the showpiece event.

On August 19, 2018, skipper Keith Morton will take his men to Paisley to take on local rivals Mazars Grange at Ferguslie’s Meikleriggs ground.

And it was on August 20, 1978, that Hamish More and his team from Goldenacre defeated Watsonians by eight wickets at Hamilton Crescent to lift the silverware.

Since that day the Capital side have won it again in 2000 and 2012, but with it being four decades since the first victory, that has been the cup run on everyone’s minds this week.

Indeed on September 8 – at the Grosvenor Hotel – a number of players who were involved that day will be gathering along with club members to celebrate that success and reminisce about the famous 1978 season.

Current Heriot’s president Kevin McLaren said: “It is worth remembering that the 1978 Cup success for the cricket club kicked off a memorable year for Heriot’s sport, preceding as it did the first time the national championship was won by the rugby club.

“It would be terrific to see many from both clubs on September 8 to celebrate the joy which sport at Goldenacre has brought to so many down the years and which it continues to do.

“The man who lifted the trophy – Hamish More – has agreed to share some of the stories from that era and will no doubt throw in a few of his own as well.”

Back in 1978 the Scottish Cup was known as the Shish Mahal Trophy and leading into that season Heriot’s had a few league and Masterton Trophy successes under their belts, but the big one still eluded them.

In the first round at home against Drumpellier, Heriot’s made 138-9 batting first with George More making 43 and Andrew Ker 40.

Some good bowling meant that the opposition could only muster 76 in reply.

Then followed – according to Hamish More – “probably the most famous win in the club’s history” away to Aberdeenshire in round two.

Peter Rhind and George Godard took seven wickets between them as the hosts made 135-9 at Mannofield.

Heriot’s suffered a batting collapse though and looked out of things in the chase when they fell to 103-9.

Ronnie Brock and Gordon Lee held their nerve with the bat though to get the runs required in a very dramatic ending.

Chasing 153 to win away in the semi-final against Clydesdale, 65 not out from club captain Hamish More saw them through.

“The most daunting of routes to the final had been successful and the final proved rather more straightforward and we always enjoyed playing Watsonians,” Hamish More recounts in a special booklet produced by Charles Clark to mark the anniversary.

“Having chosen to bat first Watsonians could only make 100-9. In response my brother George and I put on 32 for the first wicket before George was caught down the leg side.

“Andrew Ker and I then took the score onto 97 before I lost concentration and chipped a catch to cover while on 41. Andrew and Grant Lidster then steered the side home with no further alarm and with plenty of overs to spare, Andrew finishing on 46 not out.

“It says a lot about the standard of club cricket at the time that the Heriot’s side at the time included six Scottish internationalists although it would stand alone in the club’s record books as the only Scottish Cup win for some 22 years.”