The season opened for Methlick at King’s College with an unseasonal sunny day and it was Tim Duffy’s first test as captain of the first team. Despite numerous absences much was expected after Super Kings had been steam-rollered at Fraserburgh last week, bowled out for 25. But, from experience, the University wicket plays a lot straighter and is more batsman friendly so MCC could not afford to be over-optimistic.  

Super Kings won the toss and decided to bat and it was clear from the off that the home side were struggling with the swing and extra pace off the wicket from Duffy. The skipper also opted to go with slow drift from Colin Addison at the other end. The opening batsmen didn’t hang around for long, both falling to Duffy for not many runs.

The home side had obviously decided that hitting out was the tactic of the day. Ex-Gordonian, Aggrawal, found the boundary twice swinging outrageously across the line and it was only a matter of time until he became Duffy’s third victim, LBW.

Tom Acton came on to replace a tidy Addison spell of 28 runs off 8 overs. His first over was a wild attempt at pace but settled down quickly afterwards to get some nice late swing and took the wicket of Rabbini, caught at mid-off by Brian Anderson,  in his second over and clean bowled Dsouza for 1 in his third.

Duffy had devastated the batting taking 3 for 9 in his spell of 10 overs. Devendran and Mouli had settled the batting down and took a poor score past 100 until Jamie Jones, bowling with great pace on a fast wicket, cleaned up Devendran for 41. The partnership broken, Mouli went quickly afterwards, edging debutant Alan Robson’s out-swinger to Woodhouse behind the stumps.

Jones finished the innings with a second wicket with the tail unable to cope with the pace, leaving Super Kings on 130 for 8 from their 45 overs. Surely a below-par score.

After tea, Mark Woodhouse and Stuart Anderson opened the batting but both were out quickly, Woodhouse run-out for 1 and Anderson bowled for a duck. Any nerves were quickly dispelled as Robson and Acton came together and the ginger duo never looked in trouble.

Acton was finally bowled for 26 which included a couple of maximums in a partnership worth 45. Jamie Jones then came in to play supporting role to Robson. Once the Jonny Bairstow lookalike had reached his half century he accelerated and took Methlick home with a fantastic 83 not out , finishing with two 6’s and reaching the required total in only 27 overs and with the loss of only 3 wickets, ably supported by Jones, unbeaten on 14.

A steady start to the season but greater challenges will lie ahead. Next week’s visitors to Methlick are Aberdeen Grammar FP 2nds.

At home Methlick 2nds opened their account with a loss to Crathie. Despite holding the visitors to 125 all out, they could only manage 65 in reply, with skipper Rob Fryer top-scoring with 20. Notable performances were Robert Kennedy, opening the bowling and taking 3 for 31, and Grant Cordiner taking 4 for 12 off his 9 overs.

By Mark Woodhouse