This past Sunday and Monday saw glorious sunshine and 22 men clad in white playing four games of cricket at north Clickimin. Orkney were visiting the isles to play in the inter-county cricket match.
The 50 overs Orkney Breweries inter-county match was the first of four games played over the two days.
Shetland won the toss and asked Orkney to bat first. Duncan Clarke and Dougie Snape looked very confident for Orkney as Snape in particular smashed any slack bowling to the boundary.
Shetland made the breakthrough as Guy Nightingale got Clarke to edge the ball to wicket keeper John Gray. Nightingale also took the next wicket as he clean bowled Snape. Orkney were now on 51 for two.
The Shetland fielding was very poor as they dropped four catches and had a string of mis-fields. With a drinks break after 25 overs, Orkney were looking good on 99 for four. Orkney scored freely for two overs before the break as Elliot Troop smashed 21 runs from one over.
Shetland regrouped at the break and came back strongly, Asif Muhammad trapping Troop lbw. Then Neville Davis took two wickets in four balls, as wicket keeper Gray took a stumping and a catch standing up at the wicket. With Muhammad and Chris Barker getting the ball to swing Orkney were bowled out for 127, Muhammad taking three wickets for 22 runs and Davis three for 28. Gray took four dismissals behind the stumps.
Shetland looked very confident when they came out to bat needing to score at just over 2.5 runs per over. The confidence soon disappeared as Orkney took two wickets in the first four overs with only seven runs on the board. Guy Nightingale and Chris Barker were batting together and these two started to build a solid looking partnership as they brought the total up to 30.
The loss of two wickets in four balls to the bowling of Elliot Trump saw Orkney take the upper hand. One more wicket fell before lunch as Shetland were struggling on 32 for five.
A now very confident Orkney came out after lunch and set a very attacking field. Craig Jenkins and Asif Muhammad each made starts for Shetland but both were caught when they tried to increase the run rate. Dave Holliday was the only other batsman to offer any resistance as he remained unbeaten on 11 as Shetland were all out for 74 in the 28th over. The man of the match award went to Elliot Troop from Orkney as they retained the Orkney Breweries inter-county trophy.
The next game played was a 15 over game in which Shetland scored 72 for three, with Elliot Callieu 23 not out. Orkney scored 73 for five.
On Monday a 40 over game was played first with Orkney winning the toss and deciding to bat. With a lot of rain on Sunday night and a sticky air on Monday morning the Shetland bowlers got the ball to swing from the second over. It took over 20 overs the previous day before the ball started to swing.
The swinging ball made a big difference to the game as Orkney were two wickets down for three runs at the end of the fourth over, Chris Barker taking both wickets. The Shetland fielding was far better in this game as only two very difficult chances were dropped. It was, however, spin that took most of the wickets as Craig Jenkins took three for 23 and Elliot Callieu three for 13.
The pick of the bowlers was Baraker who took three wickets for four runs from five overs. Orkney were all out for 63 from 23 overs. Shetland made a disastrous start in reply as they lost their first wicket from the second ball of the game. Danny Callieu and Craig Jenkins steadied the Shetland innings before both were out leg before wicket. Chris barker made a rapid 21 before it was left to Asif Muhammad to score the winning runs. Shetland scored 64 for five from 23 overs.
The last game to be played was a 20 over match. Shetland scored 95 for six. Asif Muhammad was 24 not out. Orkney scored 101 for three. Dougie Snape was 22 not out.
The Shetland Cricket Association would like to thank umpires David March and Paul Hargreaves, Stella Smith for organising the lunch and young James Gray for raising the Shetland flag when the first Orkney wicket fell.
The next cricket is on next Sunday from 2pm at Clickimin. Any adult wanting try and play, even for the first time, should come along then. Juniors is on Wednesday night from 6-7pm.