Greaves’ close shave

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The mysteries of Duckworth-Lewis robbed Greaves Clydesdale of a great chance of victory over visitors Aberdeenshire at Titwood on Saturday. It was one of only two games in cricket’s Premiership to reach a conclusion on yet another rainy Saturday in the 2011 season.

Clydesdale batted first and gave Pakistani professional Nazar Hussain a chance to open the batting for the first time this season. He was joined by 17-year-old Patrick Barbour, in his first serious innings for the club’s first team at this level.

The two rewarded skipper Kasim Farid’s gamble with a century partnership, with Barbour out first, three short of his half-century, while Hussain compiled a hard-working 41.

With the fall of both wickets by the 30th over, the way was clear for cousins Omer Hussain and Majid Haq to build another big partnership of 110 in 17 overs. Omer was out for 61, while current Saltire Haq was still there at the end of the innings, having made 72 out of a useful total of 245 for the loss of five wickets.

As the players came in for tea, the first drops of rain began to fall, and after the interval play continued in the light rain.

Under the rules, if at least 20 overs of the second innings are completed, then even if play is then brought to a premature close, the Duckworth-Lewis method of deciding a winner kicks in.

So all Aberdeenshire had to do was to survive beyond 20 overs and ensure that they were ahead of the over-by-over changing Duckworth-Lewis target.

When the umpires decided the light had deteriorated and ended play, the visitors had lost only one wicket and were eight runs ahead of the indicated score at that stage. Had they lost a second wicket, Clydesdale would have won!

Meanwhile at neighbouring Shawholm, the Championship match between southside neighbours NVT Poloc and Weirs had long since finished after Poloc had scythed through the Weirs batting to dismiss them for just 56.

It took no more than 13 overs for Poloc to win, and the match was all over before a drop of rain had fallen.