Any winter blues that may have existed at Manderston Cricket Club were shaken off with a fine opening day victory over Comrie.
Comrie, from Perthshire, were given a warm welcome before new Manderston captain Rich Thomson won the toss and decided to bat first.
Manderston’s team included three club debutantes, two of whom were playing their first ever match with one just 12 years old – but if you’re good enough, you’re old enough!
Openers ‘Foxy’ Walsh and Mark Conington got off to a good start before Walsh (15) was clean bowled by a good ball. Michael, the oldest of three Scott brothers, carried on the good work and another good partnership ensued until M.C. was also bowled, for 25.
With Stephen Scott (no relation) caught for a duck soon after, the traditional batting collapse appeared imminent, but Hayden Martin put paid to that idea with some classy batting. M. Scott was eventually out for 38, but Martin carried on masterfully, Luckily he was joined by one of the debutantes, his son Kaylen, and together they forged a match-winning partnership.
Martin senior smashed a rapid 90, with four sixes and seven fours, and, although unable to match that, Martin junior ended on 11 not out and played some good shots.
After a classic Manderston tea the home side took the field. Spinner Eddy Richards was asked to open the bowling and got off to the perfect start, pinning the batsman plumb lbw with his first ball.
He and Andrew Scott combined to leave Comrie at just 17 for 1 after 11 overs. Comrie’s batsmen contrived to get themselves out in various unlikely and unlucky ways, including missing a straight ball that bounced twice, and inside edging a wide legside ball onto the stumps.
The former gave Aaron Mitchell his first wicket, the latter Mark Conington his third to finish with 3 for 14. Kaylen Martin also took a wicket, bowling top scorer David Oates for 16. Apart from the wicketkeeper, all the Manderston players had a bowl, and bowled so well that Comrie scored just 76 before being all out with a couple of overs to go.