JUST when Ellon Gordon cricketers thought things could not get any worse, a trip to Stonehaven proved there would be no easy way back for the champions, who plunged to the bottom of Grade One after a six-wicket defeat.
Batting first the beleaguered first eleven could muster just 89 runs with only Steve Davies able to post a respectable score.
His 36 was the cornerstone of the innings, while partners came and went the redoubtable Davies battled in a vain bid to give his side the comfort of a three-figure total.
A tally of 89 was never going to be enough, especially with Alex Keith in the Stonehaven Thistle side. His unbeaten 61 carried the home side to an easy win, leaving Ellon Gordon to contemplate what and where next.
The news that fellow strugglers Inverurie Don Valley had beaten Ist St Ronald by an astonishing nine wickets only compounded another bad day for last season’s champions.
While Ellon were slumping to bottom place in the league, leaders Bon Accord were handing challengers Cults a 74-run defeat at Aberdeen Links.
In a low-scoring affair, the home side were dismissed for 148, though any hopes of an away win were soon put to bed by veteran bowler T Malik who took four wickets for 20, as the Bons dismissed Cults for 74.
In Grade 3 any hope of relief for Ellon Gordon perished at Gordon Park where 2nd Mannofield galloped to 227 for the loss of nine wickets. Fiona Urquhart was particularly hard on the Ellon 2nds, hitting a fine 63.
Only Ken Montgomerie displayed any real resistance when Ellon batted. His 31 was, however, a fine knock in the face of some excellent bowling from C Koppolu, who ended with figures of 6 for 39, including a hat-trick.
This weekend Ellon Gordon travel to Aberdeen where they meet the vanquished 1st St Ronald at Kings Collge, hoping to emulate Inverurie’s fine win of last week.
Ellon seconds are at home to 2nd Stonehaven.