Harry Mapplebeck’s brilliant spell of pace bowling ensured FPs made the Aberdeenshire Cup Final in fine style as they blew Mannofield away for just 76 for a 133 run winning margin. Mapplebeck took 5 for 37 as he continuously sent stumps cartwheeling bowling 4 and having key man Yahathugoda LBW in a match defining effort. FPs showed great intensity in the field as all bowlers chipped in, Prash producing the ball of the day to trim Callum Martin’s bails during a great opening spell. Earlier Eddie Steinson struck an excellent 61 to help FPs to a competive 209 for 8 from their 40 overs.
FPs made 1 change from Saturday with Prash replacing Roland Knudson. FPs lost the toss and were asked to bat. Morrison and Keith opened but Keith fell for just 3 playing on to Buchanan-Smith, the score 14 for 1. Morrison’s good form did not continue as he was caught in 2 minds and was bowled by Anderson for 14, as FPs slipped to 31 for 2. Skipper Swiergon then joined forces with Steinson and they batted well in a 63 run partnership. Both were hitting regular boundaries and it was against the run of play when Swiergon fell to Indi caught at mid on for 24.
New man Anand joined Steinson and Steinson started to cut loose as he went past 50. He was looking well set for a big score when he slapped a wide ball straight to Thomson at point for 61 off 58 (9×4, 1×6) as FPs slipped to 131 for 4 after 29 overs. Senthil came and went bowled by Indi by a ball that kept low for 4, but Mark Forbes and Anand steadied the ship somewhat with some big hits by Anand who departed cutting straight to Chandu at point for 35 from 20 balls (3×4, 2×6) as Elliott picked up a wicket.
Mapplebeck and Forbes then had a stand of 23, Mapplebeck surviving 3 dropped catches in his 13, finally out LBW to Buchanan-Smith. It left Clelland and Forbes to push the score past 200, Forbes out from the last ball of the innings for 22 caught by Chandu off Buchanan-Smith. Before this, Clelland had hit the shot of the day, smashing a no ball over extra cover for a six, he finished on 9 not out, FPs final total a competitive 209 for 8.
Prash shared the new ball with Mapplebeck and it was Mapplebeck who struck in the 3rd over, Indi LBW for 4, looking to pull a short of a length delivery that did not bounce as much as he expected – a key breakthrough for FPs. Things got even better when Prash produced a stunning delivery to bowl Callum Martin, who had no answer to a ball that swung in and seamed away to be bowled for 7. Chandu and Buchanan- Smith added 32 but the introduction of Mark Forbes at the pavillion end brought a 3rd wicket as Chandu was well caught down the legside by Clelland, the batsman perhaps unlucky from his reaction.
Anand joined the fun by clean bowling Cameron for 1 as FPs tightened their grip on the game. Mapplebeck was brought back after his initial spell of 5 overs 1 for 23 and it paid dividends as he ran through the remainder of the Mannofield order taking 4 for 10 in 15 balls. First he removed Buchanan-Smith knocking out his off stump for 14, before castling Horne (3) and Yahathugoda (1). Thomson entered the attack and struck 1st ball, Shivakumar playing on for 1 and Thomson soon had a 2nd, catching his namesake bang in front for 1. It left Mapplebeck to deliver the final blow, bowling Anderson middle stump for 12 as Mannofield folded for 76.
It was a fine all round bowling and fielding effort by FPs, probably the best of the season full of intensity and most importantly wicket to wicket bowling reflected by 7 wickets being bowled, 2 wickets LBW and the other caught at the wicket. Mapplebeck led the way 7.3-0-33-5 and was well suppoerted by the other 4 bowlers who returned fine figures. Prash 4-1-7-1, Anand 5-1-13-1, Forbes 4-0-17-1 and Thomson 2-0-5-2.
FPs now advance to the Aberdeenshire Cup Final on Sunday 26th August against either Inverurie or Stoneywood Dyce who meet on August 12th.
Man of the Match
Harry Mapplebeck’s 5 wicket burst was key to victory and this spell was as well as he has bowled for FPs. A speacial word for Eddie Steinson, who’s half century was extremely important.
Normally it would have to be Chris Clelland’s six over extra cover, but Prash shades it for his magic ball to bowl Callum Martin.