Cricket Eastern Premier: Influx of new players as Heriot's defend crown

The domestic cricket season in Scotland is here for 2022 and all 10 Eastern Premier League sides cannot wait to get things started this afternoon.

Heriot's won the title last year.

Reigning champions Heriot’s, with a fairly settled squad, begin the summer away at Arbroath.

New Heriot’s skipper Lloyd Brown said: “I am really honoured to have been asked to captain the team going into 2022 action and the challenge for us as a playing group is to keep our standards high like in 2021.

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“Other clubs will be out to beat us, but we have a good balance in the squad and we are looking forward to getting things going.”

Arbroath are now captained by Bryce Carnegie and his side will be bolstered by overseas amateur Neo Matsoso and professional Wihan Lubbe, both from South Africa, soon, but they have not arrived in time for this match.

Carlton, who have a new professional from Zimbabwe in the shape of Neville Madziva, were second last year and they are now led by Tom Simpson as they get set to head to newly promoted Falkland from Fife.

“The guys are feeling really good and we are excited to be in the Premier League and mixing it with the best teams,” Falkland captain Adam Ferguson said.

“The club’s groundstaff and volunteers have worked very hard to get Scroggie Park looking at its best for the return of top flight cricket and we know that Carlton will be coming here looking to get off to a flyer.

“Whenever you go up a level home games are always important.”

Sri Lankan Harsha Cooray is due to be back with Falkland this season, but has not arrived in time for this weekend while many are interested to see how their crop of talented young players, led by Scotland under-19 World Cup player Lyle Robertson, get on at this level.

Gen!us Grange were third last year and they start off with a home Edinburgh derby against RH Corstorphine at Portgower Place.

Chris Greaves, the Scotland player, and Robbie McGlasham, who moved to Edinburgh from the north east of England during the pandemic, bring some experience to the Grange ranks.

RHC have James Dickinson as captain now and they have added Scotland A all-rounder Liam Naylor to their ranks as well as Scotland under-19 cap Sean Fischer-Keogh from Greenock.

At People’s Park in Aberdeen, Stoneywood-Dyce host Forfarshire who were fourth in 2021.

The hosts have been boosted by the arrival of South African overseas amateur duo Garreth Wolmarans and Du Preez Stander as well as local player Nathan Elliott while Forfarshire have a settled – and strong – looking squad.

Watsonians, fifth last time, and Stewart’s Melville meet at Myreside in Edinburgh.

Mike Carson is skipper of ‘Sonians and Akarshan Arora has arrived in the capital to work after time in Australia and Andrew Brock has joined the club from Grange.

Shaylen Pillay and Neel Tandel, a South African professional and overseas amateur respectively, Connor Shorten and Soyeb Khanusiya have been added to the Stew Mel squad.