Drumpellier prepare to test leaders' unbeaten record

NEW leaders Heriot's will see their unbeaten record put to the test when in-form Drumpellier, lurking dangerously in third, travel to Goldenacre.

Heriot's captain Steve Knox, still toiling with a thumb injury, looks likely to miss out today and again in tomorrow's Scottish Cup clash with Aberdeenshire. Chris Goddard, struggling for runs, drops down to the seconds, whilst Raja Javed and Jed Case return.

Drumpellier, beaten only once, and boosted by the recent return of left-arm spinner Ally Rawlinson, who followed up his remarkable analysis of 10-4-9-1 against Falkland with five wickets in Sunday's West League Cup defeat of Premiership Clydesdale, await a late fitness test on ex-Penicuik seamer John Hutton. Heriot's might cite home advantage, but Drumpellier have already won away at Arbroath and Ayr.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Stirling County ought to have too much firepower when they welcome bottom club Penicuik, but captain Phil Rees insists his side must sharpen up after last week's reverse at Heriot's. "That was a major wake-up call for us," he said. 'We need to learn from it and take our chances." He was referring specifically to the 'lives' afforded to Adam Lockhart-Krause, whose match-winning 147 included three escapes before he made 60. Ex-Stenhousemuir all-rounder Ian McDonald, replacing the unavailable Glenn Rogers, makes his league debut for Stirling, while Dougie Liddle replaces brother Ross in the Penicuik side.

Fifth-place Ayr are struggling with injuries for the trip to sixth-placed Arbroath United. Impressive young pace bowler Scott McElnea is out with a back problem, while veteran all-rounder Dougie Johnstone, in fine form of late with bat and ball, will undergo a late fitness test. Ayr will again look to pro Michael Papps to follow up last week's 160 with another imposing innings on a fast, true Lochlands wicket, which should be to his liking. Arbroath, looking to get back on track swiftly after last week's demoralising late defeat at Shawholm, are still without injured skipper Fraser Burnett. Ross McLean also misses out, but Peter Clarke returns, and Fraser Riddler steps up from the seconds.

Poloc, poised nicely in fourth after last week's thrilling eclipse of Arbroath when they chased down an unlikely last 90 in 51 balls, will again look to the batting finesse of Carl Huyser, 227 league runs for only twice out, for the trip to Falkland. Poloc captain Matty Coyle, whose whirlwind 39, including three sixes and three fours, took his side over the line on the last ball, names an unchanged side, with Keith Sheridan and Dan Walton still unavailable.

"This season been a recurring story of missed opportunities for us," lamented Falkland spokesman Paul Watson, whose side welcome back opening bowler Ryan Hepburn as they aim to add to their solitary win so far this season against lowly Penicuik.

Unchanged Stoneywood-Dyce, who were convincing seven-wicket victors over Penicuik last week, host struggling Stenhousemuir, for whom Hamish Rutherford assumes the captaincy in place of the holidaying Stuart Whyte. Sanjay Rakshit resumes behind the stumps.