Ellon Gordon’s 2nd XI were on the receiving end of yet another defeat last Saturday when they lost to local rivals 2nd Methlick. It wasn’t so much of a defeat - more of a thrashing - as they lost by 8 wickets, with Methlick scoring the necessary runs in just 13.5 overs.
Methlick skipper Stuart Kennedy went to town, scoring 81 not out of the 111 runs required for victory. His knock included no fewer than 7 sixes and 6 fours, yet he could have so easily been out first ball as his chipped shot landed between two fielders. Apart from this, he was striking the ball so well it was only a matter of time before his side secured victory.
As has happened far too often this season, Ellon went into the match with only 9 players - by far the worst season for availability in living memory. No fewer than 19 people were unavailable for various reasons.
Once again, skipper Hutcheson lost the toss, with the result Ellon were asked to bat first. This, however, worked very well for them early on, as Hutcheson and Duncan - after a cautious start - put together an opening partnership of 73 runs in the first 17 overs.
It was first change bowler Carr that brought about the breakthrough, with Duncan caught at second slip by Ritchie and then bowling Hutcheson four runs later.
The departure of these two brought about great relief for Methlick, as they whittled away the remainder of the Ellon batsmen for a mere 33 runs. Only Gardner and White offered any real resistance to the later batsmen. Gardner, eighth out, was the first of young Sam Williams’ hat trick in Ellon’s last over, as he succeeded in taking a wicket with the first ball of his opening. Meanwhile the remainder of the Ellon wickets were claimed by Carr with 6 for 33.
Elllon were able to eventually field eleven when young Keiran Moran agreed to turn out and succeeded in getting his father to don the pads for the first time as no 11.
After a tea interval for foodstuffs provided by the Station Hotel and supplemented by the home side, it was fairly obvious what Ellon had to do and that was to bowl Methlick out.
After an opening over from Hede, skipper Hutcheson took the gamble of opening from the other end with Gardner, and this brought about success right away when Carr was caught behind first delivery.
This was short lived, however, as Kennedy went on the attack against Gardner. From then on and even after, Hutcheson replaced Gardner the runs continued to flow.
Ellon’s only other success was when Hede bowled Chalmers at 86 runs, and he should have had another wicket next ball if the chance offered by Duffy had been taken.
This “life” appeared to spur Kennedy on to score even more rapidly, with the result the game was all over 19 balls later.
If Ellon are to have any hope of getting off the foot of the Grade - apart from obviously having to win a game or two - they have to be able to field a full side. Out of the first six games since the start of the season they have lost five and scratched one, while failing to raise full sides in 3 of those games.
What better way to start the revival than to pull off a shock victory over next opponents Knightriders, last seasons Grade 4 champions, at home this Saturday.