Portcullis v. Dunecht - Saturday, 12 May, 2018

Toss was won by Dunecht, who chose to field.

Portcullis : 106 all out (11).

Dunecht : 107 for 6 (30).

Vijayakrishnan 50 in vain as Dunecht ease past Portcullis.

The second fixture of Portcullis’s 2018 Grade Three season was to be another home fixture. This time Portcullis would be entertaining Dunecht on a fine sunny day at Duthie Park.

The toss was won by Dunecht on this occasion and they took no time in putting Portcullis into bat.

There was confusion reigning as the players were not quite sure amongst themselves of the batting order - a rather unfortunate timed call of nature relieving Portcullis of their skipper albeit temporarily.

It was decided that Richard Collinson and Ronnie Falconer would open the batting whilst for Dunecht Alan Burnett was to share the new cherry with Dunecht premier bowler Steve Derrett. The normal opening bowler Johnathan Clark running late.

Dunecht struck in their first over when Steve Derrett managed to move the ball back. The finest of deliveries evading the defences of Collinson and moving enough to clip the leg stump and bowl the Portcullis opener.

Portcullis 0-1

Owen Thorpe then came to the crease to join Falconer. He saw out the rest of the over clipping a single form the last ball to keep the strike.

He probably wished he hadn’t.

Burnett opened his first over with a couple of reasonable deliveries that were defended easily enough. His third ball was of a superior quality and was to do for Thorpe. Bowling with decent pace, he got the delivery to pitch on a good length outside off stump. The ball then cut back into Thorpe clipping the top of middle stump as it beat him all ends up. A fine delivery.

Portcullis 1-2. Thorpe back into the trees having scored 107 fewer runs than the previous week.

I can honestly say I have never done that. I would love it on my cricketing CV though!

It was the turn of Kannan Vijayakrishnan to join Falconer at the crease. The pair steadied the ship taking the score onto 24 before the third wicket fell. It was the turn of Falconer to depart to the trees. A poor shot previously was spilled but Falconer was not to take heed. He fended again at a short delivery outside off stump. It had been a good one-two from the bowling of Derrett. Derrett’s first ball swung away from Falconer. The second delivery although short of a length came back in. Falconer, committed to the shot, found himself cramped for room. As a result he fended it into the covers where Ross Allan made no mistake with a simple catch.

This brought about the arrival of Skipper Shovon Mostofa to the crease. This pairing was to mark the biggest partnership of the match for Portcullis. The pair batting on till drinks at 20 overs.

At drinks Portcullis had battled back to 70-3. A fine partnership of 46 had brought Portcullis right back into the match. After welcome refreshments it would be hoped Portcullis would push on from the solid base set at this point.

Alas it was not to be.

The drinks break appeared to have broken Mostofa’s train of thought. The first delivery he faced from Clark saw him glove one leaving keeper Matt Witz with a simple catch. Mostofa to his credit watched the keeper take the catch and then walk off without waiting for the umpire to make the decision.

A fine example made by the Skipper. Portcullis 70-4.

Off-spinner Mansoor Syed was bowling in tandem with Clark at this point and it was his turn to get a wicket. New batsman Paul Brown not quite settled when he was yorked by the Cowdray Park Estate bowler. Portcullis 85-5.

Vijayakrishnan was on fire though and was batting freely. His innings starting to remind us of his epic knock of 76 not out at home to Crathie the previous season.

Next man in was Jayaraj Raj. Raj was looking fit, lean and hungry and could be a handful. In a way he was but not the way Portcullis would have wished. The first delivery he faced from Clark sat up lovely for him just outside off stump. He was onto it like a flash and crashed it into the covers. Sadly not through the covers as it went straight to Mansoor Syed whose hands remained supple enough to hang onto a fine hot potato of a catch. Portcullis 90-6.

Ross McKenzie was next man in. The pair took the score onto 97, with Kannan Vijayakrishnan moving serenely past his fifty with an exquisite drive through extra cover to bring up the milestone.

At this point disaster struck. Clark grabbing his third and most important wicket – that of the half centurion Vijayakrishnan. It came as a surprise when Vijayakrishnan missed a low straight one and was trapped lbw. Portcullis 97-7. Vijayakrishnan back in the trees for a superb 53.

At this point the Portcullis innings petered out. McKenzie was caught behind from the bowling of Syed and some fine glovework from Witz, Bob Adie was beaten in flight from Syed was bowled.

The last pairing of Brian Harper and Stephen Morgan – the latter back in the Portcullis colours for the first time since the late 90’s brought about the comedy gold of the day.

The communication between the batsman for what I admit was a ropey single at best went as thus:

MORGAN [pushing the ball into the covers] “ YEEESSS! COME ON! THERE’S A SINGLE. COME ON!”


Amazingly through this conversation a run-out did not occur. If it had it would have made a welcome change from the Yes-No-Sorry scenario.

Not that it mattered. Portcullis were finally all out for 106 in the 36th over. Morgan becoming Syed’s fourth victim of the match, trapping Morgan back towards the crease lbw.

For Portcullis Kannan Vijayakrishnan led the way with a fine knock of 53 which contained eight succulent fours. Shovon Mostofa was the only other Portcullis batsman to get into double figures making a knock of 18 that contained three boundaries.

For Dunecht Mansoor Syed took the plaudits – his eleven over spell returning figures of 4-44. He was backed up by Johnny Clark who returned 3-29. The other wickets went to Steve Derrett 2-18 and Alan Burnett 1-5.

Tea was taken and enjoyed whilst the weather remained pleasant.

After tea it was the turn of Dunecht to chase down the total. They opened the batting with Keith Milne and Ross Allan. For Portcullis the bowling would be opened by Ross McKenzie and Shovon Mostofa.

McKenzie opened his bowling spell with a probing maiden over. Mostofa went one better, starting with a wicket maiden. To be honest it was an ugly delivery. A low full toss outside off stump was mistimed by Allan, perhaps not quite warmed up for such a delivery. The ball flew into the point area where Jayaraj Raj was on hand to take a fine catch, evoking memories of the 2012 Johnson Rose Bowl Final. Dunecht 0-1.

The pitch appeared to look suited to Harper’s experience and guile. Mostofa thought so too. Despite bowling another maiden over he took himself off to allow to Harper into the fray early.

Despite being hit for four by Milne, Harper was causing problems with his left arm over seam bowling. Milne escaped a lbw appeal early in the over. It was second time unlucky though as another rap on the pads was to do for him. Dunecht 15-2.

This brought Steve Derrett to the crease. He too was perplexed by Harper’s bowling. Never getting to grip with the variety of Harper’s deliveries, Derrett found himself becoming Harper’s second victim, bowled by a low one. Dunecht 20-3 after 8 overs.

This brought the talented Matt Witz to the crease. Along with the dogged Liptrott, the pair brought the momentum back towards the Dunecht side. The pair added 24 for the fourth wicket before the returning Mostofa did for Witz. A clipped drive between deep mid-wicket and deep mid-on was held onto and retained inches above the ground by a simply stunning piece of fielding by Kannan Vijayakrishnan. The wicketkeeper batsman’s innings come to an end for a fine 15. Dunecht 44-4.

This brought Mansoor Syed to the crease to join Liptrott. Liptrott continued to enjoy a fine knock at three anchoring the innings for the Dunecht side. Syed changed the momentum of the match. His aggressive stroke play putting the Portcullis side on the back foot. The pair added a partnership of 34.

Throughout the innings Ross McKenzie continued to bowl downhill, Mostofa electing to bowl the young left armer right through. Despite some fine deliveries, he remained wicketless after 71 legitimate balls. His seventy-second and final ball was his last chance to grab a wicket. A full delivery was met full on by the aggressive Syed. He drove the ball back over McKenzie’s head – well it was due to go over until a fine piece of reactive athleticism from the young seamer saw him pluck the ball from above and to hold onto a corker of a catch. Dunecht 78-5. Syed out for a fine knock of 18.

Next man in was the classy Tony Degabriel. He made a sound knock of seven before being bowled by Owen Thorpe. Dunecht 90-6.

This brought Paul McMorris to the crease to join Liptrott. There were no further scares for Dunecht and they finished the innings worthy four wicket winners.

For Portcullis Brian Harper finished with figures of 2-17. Skipper Shovon Mostofa also finished with two wickets in his 2-23. The other wicket takers were Ross McKenzie with 1-26 and Owen Thorpe with 1-20.

Dunecht’s innings was marshalled superbly by the newbie (to Portcullis anyway) Richard Liptrott who came in at one wicket down and remained 37 not out which included five fours. He was supported by Mansoor Syed with 18 (2x4,1x6) and Matt Witz 15 (3x4).

Portcullis will be a little disappointed with their overall innings today. They did not bat for 45 overs which in the Grades is a crime. Dunecht, well worthy of their win, did not bat their full 45 overs either but then, they did not have to.


KANNAN VIJAYAKRISHNAN takes the honours this week with a cracking half-century and a splendid catch. Shovon Mostofa also deserves a mention for his two wickets and knock of 18.


It was a tight decision between Mansoor Syed with 4-44 and a knock of 18 with a corking six, but RICHARD LIPTROTT takes the honours with his anchor knock of 37. He never made a mistake and carried his bat from one wicket down to steer the Westhill side to victory.


A dead heat between the superb caught and bowled of ROSS MCKENZIE and the low catch from KANNAN VIJAYAKRISHNAN.

Portcullis’s next two fixtures will bizarrely see them playing Dunecht both times. Once in the Reid Cup whilst the other will be the return Grades fixture – both at The Cowdray Park Estate.

At this stage of the Portcullis Dunecht trilogy - Dunecht are one up with two to play.

Tuesday, 22 May, 2018

Innings of Portcullis

#NameR46How OutBowlerKeeperFielderComments
11B.Harper1Not out
Leg Byes1
No Balls2

Innings of Dunecht

#NameR46How OutBowlerKeeperFielderComments
3R.Liptrott375Not out
8P.McMorris4Not out
9J.ClarkDid not bat
10A.BurnettDid not bat
11D.CurryDid not bat
Leg Byes0
No Balls2