Gala fielders getting mean on The Green

Jack Halls (Gala), St Boswells vs Galashiels cricket at St Boswells.
Jack Halls (Gala), St Boswells vs Galashiels cricket at St Boswells.

Gala secured their first win of the season in a tense low-scoring derby on The Green St Boswells.

Batting first, Gala struggled to 125 for 9 from their 50 overs, but managed to restrict the home side to just 105 in reply.

The Braw Lads opened with the father-son combination of Stevie and Jack Halls, but father was soon back in the pavilion after pushing at Rory Elms and giving Kathryn White a simple catch at slip.

Sixteen-year-old Jack was looking comfortable, taking his score to 13 before playing across a full ball from Elliot Ruthven and being trapped lbw. Duncan Millar and Dinesh Tharanga both went for 11 in quick succession before Neil Crooks and Kenny Paterson added a patient 32 for the fifth wicket taking the score to 81.

The introduction of Craig McNeil broke the partnership with Paterson being caught by Ross Graham.

Crooks followed soon after, driving White to Elms for 27, and McNeil picked up three further wickets.

However, good resistance from the lower order, particularly Robbie Pringle, Robbie Irvine and Dean Moir, saw Gala utilise their full allocation of overs and get up to 125.

In response, Dean Moir made an early breakthrough when Ruthven was caught down the leg side by Millar with five runs on the board.

Mark Williams and Stephen Broom looked to be taking the game away from Gala with an aggressive partnership that took the score to 58, and with skipper Millar off to hospital with a finger injury, St Boswells kindly loaned Gala a substitute fielder.

Gala looked in trouble, but Tharanga was rewarded for an accurate 10-over spell into the strong wind when he removed Williams.

Broom and Graham took the score to 68 before Crooks trapped the latter lbw in his first over and Tharanga made the crucial breakthrough of dismissing Broom.

Pringle replaced Tharanga and took two wickets in his first over to remove Craig Patterson and White as four wickets had fallen with no addition to the score. Gala were suddenly in the driving seat, but Barney Waugh’s patience and Scott Marshall’s belligerent hitting took the score to 90 before Crooks knocked back Waugh’s off stump.

Five runs later, Marshall went for another big swing and Moir took a good running catch at mid-off.

Crooks, having put down Elms in the slips off Pringle then had McNeill caught by Ross Patterson at point with the score on 102 and three runs later bowled Elms to claim his fifth wicket and end the Villagers’ innings 20 runs short of the Gala total.