Cricket: Leaders Titwood second best to JMS Nunholm

22 07 2009

JMS Nunholm controlled their home fixture against league leaders Titwood in Westen Union Division 2 on Saturday. They took the bulk of the points on offer but were just unable to force the win when the visitors were 69 for 6 chasing 230 to win.

The Dumfries side were put in on a softer wicket due to heavy downpours during the week. With the full complement not present Titwood opened effectively with the left arm spin of M. Ali bowling over the wicket and he produced a series of five maidens in an extremely tight spell. However the openers of Russell Johnston and Tommy McBride had still given the side a solid start with a stand of 67 at just over three an over when Johnston was bowled for 30 trying to whip one through the leg side.

Gary Dalziel continued the support of McBride until the latter was out stumped trying to force the pace having scored a composed 56 including some flashing boundaries. At 107 for 2 and in the thirtieth over the innings was then given the necessary impetus with the arrival of skipper Chris McCutcheon.

He and Dalziel rotated the strike and accelerated well in the later stages of a century partnership. McCutcheon was severe on the spin of Hart sending two sweet sixes into the car park in his innings of 66 not out. Dalziel was out caught in the second last over for 54 which was the backbone of the innings. Then Marcus Richardson ran well to help add a further 15 to reach a total of 229 for 3 which was respectable for the conditions. However the bowlers still needed to bowl ‘in the right areas’.

The most welcome aspect of the day was the sight of Alan Maskrey playing his first full match of the season after a shoulder injury sustained in the season’s first warm-up match in April. What is more he bowled his outswing beautifully beating the bat on umpteen occasions.

With Stuart Alexander in the side after a holiday break a familiar bowling duo opened the attack. However they didn’t have things all their way as Titwood reached 45 for 1 after 15 overs. Then bucket-hands McBride took a sharp catch at cover off Alexander and immediately the number 3 Sinclair almost walked for his LBW to Maskrey.

Thereafter the first change bowlers of Barnes and McCutcheon tightened the grip with three wickets falling in the sixties aided by the fielders. McBride took a sliding catch in the deep, Maskrey took a diving catch close in and Farries pocketed a fine edge at slip to reduce Titwood to 69 for 6 after 30 overs.

However then Forsyth with 41 and Z. Ali with 27 were able to stabilise the innings and ultimately ensure that Titwood avoided the outright loss. Maskrey returned to beat the bat repeatedly and also took a one handed sprinting catch to make his day. Then Williams demonstrated his technique in taking a monster skied catch as the side held it’s breath to give Alexander his fourth wicket.

Two wickets were required in the final five overs but the pair of Hart and Safi were up for the task as well as extracting another batting point in passing 150. However Nunholm took a valuable twenty points from dominating in a winning draw.

Scoreboard: Western Union Division 2, match ball sponsored by R F Angus
JMS Nunholm (20 pts) winning draw against Titwood (5 pts) at Nunholm
JMS Nunholm 229 for 3 ( C McCutcheon 66 not out, T McBride 56, G Dalziel 54)
Titwood 162 for 8 (D Forsyth 41, S Alexander 14 overs 4 for 40, J Barnes 9 overs 2 for 27)
Dumfries Man of the Match: C McCutcheon, sponsored by Dickie’s Bar.

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