Calling all Coll Cricketers!
Cricket at Glenalmond is widely regarded as being played on the most picturesque pitches in the country. The summer term brings cricket as the primary boy’s sport, with the school team regularly competing with the best in Scotland. The main square has recently received extensive new drainage, enhancing the already firm wicket, with the hope of less cancelled fixtures in the future. From House matches to 1st XI matches, everyone is given the opportunity to give the sport a go at Coll with the great coaching imparted by the staff. The OG Cricket Club, or the OG Rovers as some know it as, has at least one Sunday game against the school 1st XI every year, often being very close affairs. Many former pupils continue their love for the game post school, and it is these OGs that the club is looking to encourage to come back and play. There is a playing shirt and cap for players, as well opportunity to come back to the school for a Sunday lunch and BBQ after the game.
If you have any questions or would like to get involved please do hesitate to contact Matthew Waterston (Mathesons 2002-2007) -firstname.lastname@example.org or drop a line to the Alumni office email@example.com or 01738 842046.
OG XI v Glenalmond 1st XI, Sunday 30th April 2017
A chilly spring day greeted the OG team to their old stomping ground at Glenalmond, a team this year comprising a mixture of youth, skill, cricketing experience and humour. This has sometimes been a rarity in years gone by, partly down to the various humiliations on the field that have gone before. The side was boosted by the OG cricket stalwarts of Angus Forsyth and David Stewart Howitt, both of whom brought a healthy team of supporters to start with. Ross Davies came back for another crack at the school as well as the captain Matthew Waterston. There were a number of debuts this year, Alex Massie brought his borders cricket expertise, Mike Davies with his inside scoop on the school team having recently retired from the school, and Mike Everett with some real cricket pedigree. Also making their debuts were the young duo of James Renouf and Blair Goodfellow, both fresh from a couple of shandys in Crieff the night before, and Callum Booker who showed real commitment to the club in travelling up from London for the fixture. After both the fixtures last year being cancelled the OG team were raring to go.
As usual the OG received a very warm welcome and were kindly put into bat by the school. This was a tactic previously used by the school in order to have a quick match. In years gone by this would have been the case, however this year was different. Mike Davies and Booker opened the batting, striding out to the middle to face the opening attack. The ground was looking in fantastic condition, very little rainfall had resulted in a decent hard wicket, something very rare at the school. After weathering the initial few overs with some lovely shots from both players, Booker mistimed and spooned the ball straight up to point departing for 10. He quickly departed muttering how at least he didn’t score a duck so he wouldn’t incur the wrath of Sandy Norton. Everett came out looking to stamp his authority on the match. At 10 for 1 it wasn’t the best start. As Everett started to play his was in but was caught out by the pitch and bowled cleanly for a duck. Suddenly the OGs were 11 for 2 and in all too familiar territory. In came Ross Davies creating the Davies partnership. Mike was still confident at the other end playing some lovely strokes and as much as Ross tried to run his Dad out he stayed there self-assured. Having not played in a while Ross struggled to find his feet and spooned one up to the bowler for a simple caught and bowled departing for another duck. 29 for 3 and things not looking great. Having suffered from some drop outs in the team the previous week the OG team had to call on one of the school pupils to play in their side. Duncan Laird filled this void and came in at 5 to try and steady the ship, and steady it he did. Showing good composure against his mates who were trying everything to get him out he was stroking the ball nicely around the square. Both Davies and Laird put on a good partnership until Davies brought his innings to an end after being cleanly bowled, much to the delight of the pupils. A good knock of 33 from the Badger brought the score to 66. At this stage the OGs thought that getting to 100 would be good. The supporters rose up to acclaim Stewart Howitt as he yet again graced the square at the school, striding out to the middle into the heat of battle. However sadly before they really had the chance to take their seats again he was back in clubhouse cursing after being given out for a duck. 68 for 4 and up stepped Blair Goodfellow. A renowned bat in his school days, Blair confidently moved the score on significantly, blasting the ball past the boundary lines and providing a good partnership with Laird. But sadly Laird’s time was up and he was bowled for 15 with the score on 105 and some hope restored to the OG dressing room. Massie walked out with assurance, looking to consolidate and build on an innings that now had real promise with 12 overs to go and wickets in the bank. A couple more boundaries were found before Goodfellow succumbed for 33 after being bowled. Waterston was next in to partner Massie at the crease. With the score now at 127 there was less pressure on the scoreboard to score. Some good defensive and offensive strokes from both players built on the OG score, and with the final few overs they put on 60 runs together. Massie spent a significant period at the crease and finished not out on 13 while Waterston reached 44 not out with the final OG total coming in at 187-7 off the 35 overs. This was a score that no OG saw coming, however with a decent pitch awaiting the school batting line up there was sure to be a decent chase from them.
As always a delicious tea was enjoyed and some time spent meeting the pupils, an important part of OG sport. With the wind in their sails, the OG team were fired up, none more so than Blair Goodfellow. Opening the bowling Goodfellow steamed in with his first ball, firing it down the wicket to the quivering School batsman. The sheer power, aggression and speed of this bowl however managed to pop his shoulder out. Clearly in extreme pain Blair was helped off the field and taken to hospital to pop his shoulder back in. A sorry end to his match but we all wish him a swift recovery. A player down we were loaned one of the school players to help field. Waterston picked up the ball and finished off the remaining 5 bowls of the first over. Ross Davies opened the bowling at the other end, putting down some tricky off cutters and slower bowls. With a decent total in the bank the OGs knew if they could apply some scoreboard pressure then the wickets would come. The first 10 overs only yielded 18 runs for the school, with some really tight fielding and tricky bowling. It was only a matter of time until the batsmen made a mistake, and sure enough it came. A simple caught and bowled for Davies removed the opening batsman for 4 runs off 31 balls. Waterston finished his opening 4 overs only conceding 6 runs and handed the ball onto Booker who again carried on the same vein, bowling line and length and keeping the run rate well done. Forsyth was brought in to the attack to mix it up a bit, and off his first ball had a simple catch dropped by Stewart Howitt at slip, something that will be brought up for years to come. This did not deter him however and in his second over he dropped one short only for the batsman to steer it to Booker at Mid off. The other school opener now departing for 14 off 37. The school were 31 for 2 off 13 and in a slight bit of disarray. The OGs sensed this and pressured further. Some outstanding fielding from both of the Davies brought the demise of the 3rd batsman for the school, a long throw from the boundary from Davies Jnr to Davies Snr on wicketkeeping duties saw a text book runout and a seething batsman heading back to the pavilion. Renouf was brought in to the attack to take his frustrations of not batting out on the wicket. Having claimed he hadn’t bowled since his pre-teens he showed great line and length and in his first over removed the 5th batsman for 6 after an outstanding catch from Laird at point. The school were now 42 for 4 off 17 overs and an OG team on fire. Booker finished his 4 overs only conceding 6 runs, Davies finished his overs taking 1 wicket for 8 runs and Forsyth finished his stint taking 1 wicket for 24 runs. The school team were well aware that they now had to go for it and up the run rate. Stewart Howitt came into the attack with verve, and thought he had his first wicket only for the umpire, Sandy Norton, controversially call a No Bowl. As the overs were ticking on so was the score, and the school up the rate and the 4th and 6th batsman were showing real character and scoring nicely, putting the OG team on the back foot. The ball was tossed to Everett to provide some inspiration, and that he provided. Some nasty bowls making use of the deteriorating pitch saw his opening 3 overs yield very few runs. At the other end Massie was tossing them into the right areas and again keeping that pressure on, and it was Massie that broke the deadlock, removing the 6th school batsman for 40 after clean bowling him. At 116 for 5 after 28 overs the school simply had to go for it. Everett was plugging away and came good after an outstanding catch from Booker at cover to remove the school captain and danger man. Scoring 45 runs and playing some lovely shots the school captain is going to be a key figure for the school in the season to come. 132 on the board and only 4 overs left the OGs knew the end was in sight. Again more tight bowling from Everett and Massie and good fielding kept the score down and made it impossible for the school to win. A run out on the final bowl left the school 19 runs short of the OG total on 168.
A great all round performance and win from the OG team with most players getting a bat and everyone getting a bowl. A win is a real rarity and one that was savoured by the OG team. Yet again the school were very polite and sportsman like in a thoroughly entertaining and fun match to play in. Thank-you goes to the umpires Sandy Norton and Andrew Rowley and to all the others for behind the scenes work that went into getting this fixture going. I hope to see you all again next year and welcome you back to the OG. Please spread the word, we are always looking for players.
OG Team:- Mike Davies (former Head of Sport), Callum Booker (Patchell’s 03-08), Mike Everett (Goodacre’s 76-81), Ross Davies (Patchell’s 08-13), Blair Goodfellow (Patchell’s 10-15), David Stewart Howitt (Reid’s 80-84), Matthew Waterston © (Matheson’s 02-07), Alex Massie (Goodacre’s 87-92), James Renouf (Patchell’s 10-15) Angus Forsyth (Reid’s 79-84)
Scorecard:-OG XI- 187-7 off 35 overs (Waterston 44*, M Davies 33, B Goodfellow 33) Glenalmond 1st XI- 168-8 off 35 overs (R Davies 1-8, A Forsyth 1-24, J Renouf 1-23, A Massie 1-23, M Everett 1-45)
OG XI win by 19 runs
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