Gala celebrating first cricket championship win and Hawick also on up
Gala secured their first-ever East of Scotland Cricket Association Championship title thanks to a comprehensive win at Marchmont on the final day of the season.
The Braw Lads needed to win to pip Carlton to the title by one per cent and did so in style with a 149-run victory at Cavalry Park, taking their win rate to 87.28.
That victory sets up a play-off game against the winners of the Strathmore and Perthshire League on Saturday, September 11, to earn promotion to Cricket Scotland’s Eastern Premier League.
The Galashiels side’s total of 235 for five was set up by a century-plus from opener Sid Ponneri, who put on a 100 run opening partnership with Finlay Rutherford (31).
Gala’s innings then wobbled as Jack Halls and Upul Indrasiri both fell soon after for ducks, but captain Josh Irvine scored a quickfire 59 from 39 balls to help Gala to their best score of the season.
Ponneri finished on an unbeaten 109, batting for the whole Gala innings in what was a brilliant performance.
In reply, Marchmont slipped from 52 for two to 86 all out thanks to a combination of all of Gala’s bowlers taking wickets.
Indrasiri was top wicket-taker with three for 12, and Robbie Irvine, Ash Rhode and Dinesh Tharanga took two each and Scott Paterson one.
Gala’s seconds defeated Stewart’s Melville fourths at Meigle Park by four wickets to finish the season in third place in division seven, just outside the promotion spots.
The Edinburgh side made 170 all out, and Gala were struggling at one point, but captain Ross Patterson and Graeme Ormiston saw their team home.
That rounded off a good return for the seconds in their first season playing Saturday cricket for over 20 years, having won six out of 10 games for a third-place finish and success rate of 73.5%.
Also at the weekend, eight under-12s teams took part in the Rowan Boland Memorial Tournament on Sunday at Meigle Park.
The overall winners were Carlton, and the day, organised by Jack Halls, helped raise £400 for the trust named after the late Galashiels youngster, thanks to a raffle and cake sale.
Kelso finished bottom of the championship with 21.93%, having lost all 13 games they played.
Hawick and Wilton ended their season with a home defeat by five wickets but they and their visitors, table-topping Dunfermline and Carnegie, had cause to celebrate as both had already secured promotion to ESCA division two.
Second-placed Hawick, captained by Euan Hair, were 101 all out, with Evan Alexander scoring 38 and Morgan Tait 29.
Dunfermline, winners of all 13 of their games this season, scored 105 for five.
Selkirk finished in third place with a win rate of 70 per cent, 10.91 per cent behind the Teries.
The Souters ended their campaign with a home loss to Marchmont’s seconds. They were 120 all out and their guests chased that total down with six wickets remaining.
Melrose were seventh with 56.79% and St Boswells bottom with 35%.
Peebles County finished second bottom of division four with 39.24% after winning two of their 13 games.