Ellon Gordon enjoyed mixed fortunes over the weekend, though the club could have been justifiably aggrieved that Saturday’s opponents Mannofield chose to field two of their top Eastern Premier players to play in the Grade 1 match.
The inclusion of record-breaking Adrian Neill was the most significant as the 6ft 10in South African-born bowler tore the heart out of the Ellon batting line-up, claiming five wickets for eight runs as the home side crashed to 90 all out.
Neill hit the national headlines in May when he became the first bowler in history to take 10 wickets in a national league game.
Unfortunately, the 21-year-old may make the news again as it appears that Aberdeenshire may have neglected to register him to play in Grades cricket.
Currently the situation is being investigated by the local association.
Findlay Anderson and Neill were freed up to play in the game at the Gordon Park after Shire’s Eastern Premier game at Mannofield against Heriots was called off in the morning due to a flooded pitch.
Jonny Barrett stood tall against the Aberdeen side, scoring 40, but was well supported by Rich Greenfield who was the only other Ellon batsman to reach double figures.
The Ellon total of 90 was passed for the loss of only one wicket, effectively ending the Gordon Park side’s hopes of winning the league.
Ellon were back in action on Sunday, compensating for the Saturday reverse with a 90-run win at the Links where they were far too good for Crescent who were bowled for 46 when set 137 to win. Scott White and Rich Greenfield were the only two bowlers used by Ellon.
Greenfield claimed the lion’s share, capturing seven wickets for 20 runs, though White was equally economic with his three for 24.
Ben Webb top scored when Ellon batted, closely pursued by Bryan Fuller with a late innings knock of 3.
A home game this Saturday against lowly Fraserburgh gives Ellon Gordon the opportunity to make it back-to-back wins.
The relief in the Ythanview on Saturday night was almost tangible when Methlick returned to winning ways for the first time since June 6, recording an easy six-wicket victory at the expense of 2nd Knight Riders who were bowled out for 63.
Skipper for the day Steve Murphy had a field day for the Lairds side, taking three wickets for 11 runs top scoring with 26, but not for the first time in the short history of the MCC it was their veterans who made their presence felt.
Former Ellon Gordon player Colin Addison chipped in with three late wickets for a paltry five runs, while opening batsman Mark Woodhouse hung around long enough for his invaluable 24 to ensure a welcome victory.
Ellon 2nds suffered a heavy defeat by 2nd Mannofield at Rubislaw on Saturday. They were bowled out for 91 and eventually beaten by nine wickets.
Ellon were weakened by holiday call-offs and their line-up included two 14-year-olds, who will have gained experience playing at this level.
This Saturday Ellon travel to Balmoral to play Crathie.