Carson, Chalmers and Dingle shine at Mannofield to give 1XI much-needed victory

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Watsonians 1XI: 336-3 (50 overs)

M. Carson 175, E. Chalmers 100*, A. Chalmers 35*

Aberdeenshire 1XI: 221 all out (39.4 overs)

C. Mackaness 115, L. Munro 53, L. Dingle 5-37

Following an early departure and a long journey up to the granite city, the 1XI hastily disembarked from the bus assisted by something released from deep within the bowels of Shaka. While a very ill Munsey slept on the floor of the changing room, the remaining 10 took to the field to warm up, knowing that this was a must win game. 

After winning the toss, captain Chalmers chose to bat first on what appeared to be a very good wicket, and sent in Carson and Hindmarsh to open the batting. The opening pair got off to a quick start, reaching 34 from the first 5 overs before the first wicket fell, Hindmarsh bowled for 9. This brought the skipper to the crease and the outstanding batting display which was to follow. A 248-run partnership from 38 overs between Carson and E. Chalmers put Watsonians very much in the driving seat. Carson lead the onslaught until his dismissal in the 43rd over, making an exceptional 175 from 148 balls, including 23 fours and 3 sixes. 

Following the departure of Carson and the 5-ball innings of Munsey taking the score to 292-3 from 45.2 overs, the Chalmers brothers looked to take the total past 300 in the remaining 4.4 overs. E. Chalmers continued on to make a clinical and important century from 122 balls, whilst some powerful hitting from A. Chalmers took him to a paper 35 from just 15 balls including 4 sixes from the final 4 balls of the innings, leaving Aberdeenshire with a tough target of 337 to win. 

The home side struggled to get going thanks to some tight bowling from the opening partnership of Pratt and Dingle. A commanding start for Watsonians saw Dingle taking three wickets and Pratt one, followed by a bizarre suicidal run out to Sim, restricting Aberdeenshire to 16-5 after only 6 overs. The sixth wicket fell with the score on 50, giving Pratt his second of the afternoon. A spirited 144-run 7th wicket partnership between Mackaness and Munro for Aberdeenshire took the total to 194, however constant scoreboard pressure combined with a tight spell from A. Chalmers broke the partnership as Munro attempted to advance down the wicket only to be stumped on 53. With the score on 194-7, Dingle came back into the attack to try and seal the game for Watsonians. This proved a successful bowling change with Dingle bowling Mackaness for a well-made 115, leaving Aberdeenshire 218-8, and the game as good as won for Watsonians. The final two wickets fell for just 3 runs, seeing A. Chalmers pick up a second wicket and Dingle completing his 5-fer to end Aberdeenshire’s innings on 221, topping off a dominating performance from Watsonians.

The 1XI will look to continue this momentum next Saturday against Forfarshire in the first of four home games in a row.

Tom Pratt