Stonehaven v. Portcullis - Saturday, 08 July, 2017

Toss was won by Portcullis, who chose to field.

Stonehaven : 207 for 8 (30).

Portcullis : 109 for 9 (13).

Stonehaven spank Portcullis to maintain 100% record at the top of Grade Three.

Week 10 of the 2017 Grades season saw Portcullis once again their travels. This time it was Mineralwall Park, the home of Grade Three League Leaders Stonehaven CC.

With all three Captains and Vice-Captains unavailable, Portcullis returned to the ex- skipper Dave Mitchell to lead the side once again.

Mitch got the first part right, winning the toss and putting the home side into bat. Despite the recent heavy rain, Stonehaven, with the help of covers managed to produce an excellent track. A doff of the cap to the players/groundsmen who prepared such a good wicket under such trying conditions.

It was the newest version of M & M who open the bowling for Portcullis – Dave Mitchell and Ross McKenzie. For Stonehaven, it was a new opening pairing of Liam Fenton and Andrew Gale who would open this week. Regular openers Ross Devlin and Ray Van Gissel posted missing for this fixture.

The pairing of Fenton and Gale seemed to dovetail nicely initially. Fenton taking on the role of the aggressor of the pair whilst Gale was the anchor of the pairing. A solid partnership of 21 was posted before Portcullis took their opening wicket, Mitchell trapping Gale lbw. Stonehaven 21-1.

It was the turn of Andy Wilson to join the fray. He always had (for Portcullis) the annoying habit of batting well against the City Centre Green Caps and this match would be no exception. To begin with though he took the supporting role left by Gale.

In the meantime, Portcullis, in an attempt to upset the Stonehaven momentum, went left field. McKenzie was rested and spinner Chris Poolman, fresh from figures of 4-23 in his previous match was introduced into the attack. Sadly, on this occasion it did not work. Fenton pulling two full tosses for six over midwicket from Poolman’s first two deliveries. Unfortunately, the young spinner did not recover from the initial onslaught and was withdrawn three overs later.

The score went onto 56 before Portcullis captured their second wicket. Liam Fenton, batting quite beautifully, made the error of asking what he was on during a break in play. On finding out he was on 48, he was gutted to find he did not add to his score when he became Mitchell’s second wicket of the day. Mitchell bowling him with a full one via his pads. Stonehaven 56-2.

Brian Campbell joined Wilson at the crease as the pair added 17 for the third wicket. Campbell was just beginning to loosen up, quickly moving onto 10. Portcullis in the meantime made their second bowling change of the day, replacing Poolman with Kannan Vijayakrishnan. Simon Winstanley stepping into the wicketkeeper role to allow the Portcullis all-rounder to try his hand with the cherry.

The change brought instant success. Vijayakrishnan bowling Campbell with his first delivery. Stonehaven 73-3.

Jason Gouws was next man in and, unfortunately for Portcullis took a liking to the Portcullis bowling attack. In a partnership of 36 for the fourth wicket, the Stonehaven middle order batsman knocked up a quick fire 29. Not being able to capture his wicket via a bowler it took a silly quick single against a quick-witted Kannan Vijayakrishnan to topple him. A solid push to mid-off looked initially like a comfortable single. That was until the supple Vijayakrishnan lunged to his left and blocked the drive low down. Both batsmen had committed themselves and were in no-man’s land. Vijayakrishnan staying cool and alert enough to quickly flick the ball back to the keeper, Winstanley, who completed the run out. Stonehaven 109-4. Gouws knock of 29 had included 4 fours and a six.

This brought Jason Matthews to the crease and if Portcullis though a comeback was on they were sadly mistaken. The fifth wicket partnership yielded 61 runs as both Matthews and Williams went through the gears. Portcullis had introduced Chris Owens into the attack as well as mixing it with Mitchell and the returning McKenzie. The score rose rather quickly to 170 before the fifth wicket fell. Jason Matthews gone for a brisk 39 falling to a splendid caught and bowled from the young ginger maestro Ross McKenzie. Matthews marvellous knock containing five fours and two sixes. Stonehaven 170-5.

Callum Findlay was next man in and looked to have the licence to tonk! This he did swinging at every delivery making a quick-fire six before becoming McKenzie’s second wicket. Stonehaven 176-6.

Portcullis took a further two wickets in quick time. First up Andy Wilson and Dave Long had the rather silly idea of taking on Kannan Vijayakrishnan’s arm in the attempt to take a quick single. There was only ever going to be one winner as Vijaykrishnan smashed Long’s stumps before he even got into that half of the wicket. Long continuing his run back to the clubhouse. Andy Wilson then finally fell for a cracking 35. He got himself out attempting to switch hit Chris Owens. The shot was executed perfectly enough. The only thing wrong was that he picked up Jake Dawson in the deep who held onto a fine swirling catch. Stonehaven 188-8.

In terms of wickets that was it for Portcullis. The pairing of Brian Snelling and Clive Hinchcliffe enjoying an unbroken partnership of 19 to finish the Stonehaven innings on 207-8 after 45 overs.

Pick of the bowling for Portcullis was skipper Dave Mitchell who finished with figures of 2-8 from his 12 overs. Ross McKenzie finished with 2-43 from his 12 overs. Chris Owens took 1-44 from his spell whilst Kannan Vijajyakrishnan finished with 1-50 from his spell. His fielding performance also saw him as chief architect in the pair of spectacular run-outs during the Stonehaven innings.

For Stonehaven opener Liam Fenton top scored with a solid 48. He was backed up throughout the innings by Jason Matthews (39), Andy Wilson (35) and Jason Gouws (29). Further solidity was shown with double figures for Brian Snelling (17 not out0 and Brian Campbell (10).

Even if you didn’t like cricket I would recommend you come along for the teas as sometimes they can be fantastic. Already Portcullis have experienced the pies of Crathie and even a cracking curry courtesy of Aberdeen Super King’s. Stonehaven themselves put on a fine spread which was enjoyed hugely by the Portcullis Posse!

After a bountiful tea it was the turn of Portcullis to post a reply. Portcullis would open the batting with the left hand-right hand combination of Chris Owens and Ronnie Falconer. Normally Stonehaven would open with a left hand-right hand combo of their own in the shape of Callum Findlay and Clive Hinchcliffe. Not this time though. Young Findlay would open with his fiery accurate right arm over but Stonehaven pulled a rabbit out of the hat by promoting the steady reliable Jason Matthews to share the new cherry instead.

The change in bowling line-up did not seem to work initially. Owens and Falconer started tightly enough. The free flowing Owens batting with left hand grace whilst Falconer was steady and unflustered. Although the Stonehaven bowling was accurate and steady, the portcullis pairing kept up around the run rate. The first ten overs yielding 39 runs without losing a wicket.

Stonehaven had more tricks up their sleeves however as the opening pairing were relieved by the introduction of Grades legend Clive Hinchcliffe who was more than ably backed up the familiar name if not the familiar looking Brian Snelling.

The score moved onto 46 when Stonehaven finally made their breakthrough – Hinchcliffe winning the battle of the left handers when he bowled the fluent Chris Owens for a splendid knock of 32. Portcullis 46-1.

This brought skipper Dave Mitchell to the crease to join Falconer. The pair did keep up the scoring rate to around 4 an over despite the further accurate bowling of Snelling and Hinchcliffe. The score crept up to 78 when Portcullis lost their second wicket. It was game reward to Snelling whose accurate bowling finally reaped the wicket that he richly deserved. He finally breached the defences of Falconer, bowling the (not so) portly opener for a sound 22. Portcullis 78-2.

It was the turn of run-out king Kannan Vijayakrishnan to join Dave Mitchell at the crease. The partnership did not last long though as Vijayakrishnan became Hinchcliffe’s first victim when he offered a simple catch to Wilson. Portcullis 81-3.

Alas 81-3 became 81-4 when the persistent seam accuracy of Brian Snelling was rewarded with his second wicket bowling the dangerous Dave Mitchell for 15.

With that Portcullis’s slim hopes of an unlikely victory evaporated. Ross McKenzie joined Jake Dawson at the crease and the target was the remainder of the Portcullis line-up to try and occupy the crease for the remaining overs. As negative as this may sound it was not meant to be. They were batting on a good track facing a strong bowling attack and it would be good experience for many of the Portcullis posse.

Dawson became Snelling’s third and final wicket when he was trapped by the hirsute seamer. Callum Findlay came back into the attack and captured a couple of wickets into the bargain. His first wicket was that of Winstanley who could count himself a tad unfortunate. Findlay initially struggled to get his range bowling full tosses and beamers (albeit accidentally). One of those beamers was fortunately fended away by Winstanley who took a hefty blow on the hand. After treatment Findlay got his range back to normal – his next ball being a spanking yorker that beat Winstanley all ends up.

The Findlay yorker also did for next man in Andy Blackburn as he was Findlay’s second victim of the day.

Brian Harper was the next man in and with the score well out of reach young S. Barrie was given a couple of overs – the second over from the young man resulting in a fine maiden over. Brian Campbell’s variety of spin was also brought into the attack – bizarrely to cries of ridicule from his team mates. It was a bit harsh as Campbell’s slow bowling was accurate and troubled both batsmen. Campbell was rewarded when he captured the wicket of Brian Harper, trapping the Portcullis player lbw. Portcullis 97-8.

Chris Poolman was next man in and along with the studious Ross McKenzie saw out the remainder of the overs, Portcullis closing their innings on 109-8. Bob “Whispering Death” Adie being the unlucky Portcullisian not to bat on this day.

The pick of the batting was Chris Owens who made a serene 32 which included four sumptuous fours. He was backed up by fellow opener Ronnie Falconer (22- 1x4). The other players to get to double figures for Portcullis were Ross McKenzie (15 not out – 1x4) and Dave Mitchell (15 – 2x4).

The pick of the Stonehaven bowlers was that man Brian Snelling who returned bowling figures of 12 overs, 5 maidens, 18 runs for 3 wickets. He bowled accurately throughout giving little away. He was backed up by Clive Hinchcliffe with 2-24 and Callum Findlay (2-29). The other wicket taker for Stonehaven being Brian Campbell (1-9)

It was victory for Stonehaven, as was generally expected, and their promotion hopes got a further boost that day as well. Grampian 2nds had a surprising victory against promotion hopefuls Aberdeen SuperKings.

For Portcullis it was a lovely day out in the sunshine playing cricket on a lovely pitch with a smashing tea between innings. As has been the case in all of their fixtures this season the match was played in high spirits and with good sportsmanship all round. Next up for the City Centre Green Caps a tough home fixture to the Lords of Crathie!


Overall this was a tough call. Chris Owens made a fine 32. Dave Mitchell a knock of 15 and figures of 2-28 whilst Kannan Vijayakrishnan with two run outs and a wicket and Ronnie Falconer with a patient knock of 22 deserve mentions. It was one of the other gingers in the team ROSS MCKENZIE who takes the honours this week. His bowling figures of 2-43 were backed up with a doughty unbeaten knock of 15.


Again this was tough to call. Liam Fenton (48), Jason Matthews (39), Andy Wilson (35) and Jason Gouws (29) deserve mentions for each of their splendid knocks but again I’m going for another not out batsman this week. BRIAN SNELLING who finished with 17 not out with the willow and bowling of 3-18 from 12 overs deserves the plaudits. His bowling was exceptionally accurate and he troubled all of those he faced.


Although Ross McKenzie’s caught and bowled was a thing of beauty, he has already won a man of the match as a result of this. That means JAKE DAWSON takes the honours this week for the high swirling catch he held onto from the bat of Andy Wilson.


When it comes to run-outs the King amongst men is surely KANNAN VIJAYAKRISHNAN. His scorching run-out of Dave Long was a thing of beauty whilst the Stonehaven veteran run out by 8 – 10 yards!!

Wednesday, 12 July, 2017

Innings of Stonehaven

#NameR46How OutBowlerKeeperFielderComments
5J.Gouws2941Run OutS.WinstanleyK.Vijayakrishnan
8D.LongRun OutK.Vijayakrishnan
9B.Snelling173Not out
10C.Hinchcliffe2Not out
11S.BarrieDid not bat
Leg Byes0
No Balls5

Innings of Portcullis

#NameR46How OutBowlerKeeperFielderComments
6R.McKenzie151Not out
10C.Poolman2Not out
11B.AdieDid not bat
Leg Byes2
No Balls0