Cricket: Hooray for Cooray as Dons win

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ABERDEENSHIRE took out their frustrations on champions Watsonians yesterday as they kick-started their Eastern Premiership glory quest.

Rattled by last weekend’s derby defeat at the hands of Arbroath, the Dons got back on track in devastating fashion at Mannofield.

Harsha Cooray emerged as the star of the show with a brilliant all-round display. He launched the demolition job by smashing a quick-fire 63 not out – then grabbed four cheap wickets to send Sonians sliding to 145 all out in pursuit of 247. There were also two wickets apiece for Daya Singh and Tyler Buchan.

Skipper Marc Petrie led from the front as Arbroath maintained their 100 per cent record with a four-wicket win over SMRH. Petrie struck 78 to rule out any fightback from the Edinburgh side, for whom Cedric English had made 87 in their 174 all out.

Petrie was well-supported by Greig Peal, who followed up a tight bowling spell which featured four wickets with a stout 29 not out.

Carlton were always in charge in the capital clash with Heriot’s at Grange Loan. The writing was on the wall for Heriot’s the moment Adam Lockhart-Krause was trapped lbw by Fraser Allardice.

That left Heriot’s on 31 for two – and even worse was to come when another youngster, Cheeky Gossain, had player-coach and former Scotland opener Steve Knox lbw.

Allardice snapped up a fine catch at point and finished with three for 31.

The slump was halted by pro Cameron Farrell’s half century, but Heriot’s could only reach 140 for seven.

Robust early contributions from Fraser Watts (45) and Hamish Gardiner (42) ensured there would be no fightback and some big-hitting by Gordon Drummond took Carlton to their modest target in the 29th over with six wickets to spare.

Ryan Flannigan aimed a timely message at Scotland chiefs with a fine century to inspire Grange to a solid victory over Stoneywood-Dyce at Peoples Park. Flannigan hit 102 and Josh Edwards 55 as they strolled to 245 for six.

Another national squad member snubbed for the current clash with Australia A, Michael Leask, responded for the northerners but his 101 proved to be in vain, with Raj Routray and Andrew Brock sharing eight scalps as SD were 180 all out.

In the Western zone, Dumfries romped to a convincing seven-wicket home success against Ayr. Andi McElnea top-scored with 45 as the visitors amassed 175.

But they had no answer to the timing and power of Chris Belwood, whose unbeaten 76 propelled Dumfries to 180 for three in only 35 overs.

And, in the First Division, there were wins for Eastern section leaders Glenrothes over West Lothian, Forfarshire against Freuchie and, in the West, Kelburne against struggling Prestwick.