With four games left to play, a win against Edinburgh South II at Philiphaugh tomorrow would almost assure Selkirk’s cricket team of promotion.
John Everitt’s men have been battling away in the East of Scotland League Division Five all season and are currently at the top of the table with only one loss to their name.
The influential skipper has been absent due to holiday commitments over the last two weeks but Rory Banks has led the team well with Fenton brothers Greg and Darren doing their bit to steady the ship, much to the delight of all at the club.
Secretary Ronnie Dumma told the Wee Paper: “This team has been playing together for the last three years at least, with some of them coming up through our youth system, and we are reaping the benefits of that now. All the Borders teams joined the East of Scotland League at a lower level than their ability would suggest which, in Selkirk’s case, has worked to their advantage.
“They have been winning more and that has made them more confident, so it’s win-win all round.”
Last Saturday’s victory against Holy Cross preserved Selkirk’s unbeaten home record since the club joined the league. Moreover, it leaves the Souters in pole position to secure a second consecutive promotion. Tomorrow, Selkirk look to avenge their only defeat this season as they welcome Edinburgh South to Philiphaugh.
“This game will test us, but we are playing at home, so, with everyone back from their holidays, I am fairly confident that we can pull it off,” added Dumma.
Last weekend, a devastating spell of bowling from Greg Fenton crucified Holy Cross’s batting at Philiphaugh.
The Bannerfield tyro’s figures of seven wickets for 22 runs in nine overs took his season’s tally to 33 and cemented his position as the leading wicket-taker, not only in Division Five, but across all nine divisions. Skipper Banks won the toss and invited the visitors from Edinburgh to bat first. With several regular and reliable performers absent, the Selkirk side appeared – on paper at any rate – to be vulnerable. Fenton had other ideas, however, dismissing the first Holy Cross batsmen in a spell that surpassed even his captain’s wildest hopes.
Bowling fast and straight, Fenton simply overwhelmed the visiting batsmen. Four of his victims were bowled and Malcolm Ford chipped in with a brace of catches. Bates, who made 31, was the only batsman to reach double figures.
The naggingly-accurate medium-pace duo of Banks and Ford then mopped up the tail and Holy Cross were all out for 47, and in desperate need of a miracle if they were to salvage anything.
No such miracle was seen. Stuart Skeldon and Fenton put on 44 for the first wicket before the former was dismissed for 17. Fenton’s 28 not out, however, capped a memorable day for him and sealed a comprehensive nine-wicket victory for Selkirk.