Saturday 14 September saw yet another edition of the Seagulls’ Twenty20 cricket tournament, the premiere university cricket festival in the country. On this occasion the action comprised teams from Edinburgh and Dundee Universities, Freuchie Cricket Club and two teams from St Andrews. This competition was divided into a round robin format, with each team playing the other once (after University of Aberdeen didn’t turn up on the day). What ensued was a typically high octane and exciting display that saw Edinburgh and Freuchie finish the day with 3 wins apiece and thus equal on nine points.
As the minibuses of rolled into University Park after traversing the Tay and the Forth, Dundee and Edinburgh respectively set up for fixtures versus the two home teams. It was to be a promising start for the senior of the two home sides, as St Andrews 1, pleasingly made up of a plethora of talented freshers, cruised to victory over Dundee by 15 runs on the first XI pitch. Sadly it was an altogether more predictable affair on the second XI pitch where Edinburgh, resplendent in their glorious green one-day pyjamas, destroyed St Andrews’ second team (resplendent in tracksuit bottoms) by ten wickets. This was to be symptomatic of the day for Peter O’Boyle’s men, who were crushed in all three matches they played; notable highlights of which include Dundee hitter Chris Burns creaming the ball into DRA about eight times.
Indeed the first game was to be the only success for St Andrews’ first team as well. In a re-run of the perennial division 1A title decider, Sam Holland’s gentlemen were easily beaten in the end by Edinburgh, losing by six wickets. At this point the first pitch was invaded by a troupe of fat blokes chasing an egg around (to quote a notable St Andrews cricketing hipster) or, as they prefer to be called, the Men’s Rugby Club, and so all games had to be held upon the deteriorating second pitch wicket. We are reliably informed that, along with the cathedral ruins, the crease on the second pitch is the only piece of land the University owns that is just as it was 600 years ago, and so it can possibly account for the rather shocking nine wicket hammering that DUCC endured at the hands of a very clinical Freuchie side.
The final match of the day was played between Dundee and Edinburgh in very questionable light conditions. But safety officer Max Arthur deemed that if the questionable five-for-a-pound burgers hadn’t hurt anyone then nothing would, and so the game was started. In a close affair, that was affected by more than a little dubious umpiring from O’Boyle, Dundee ruined EUCC’s perfect day with a thrilling four-run victory, leaving the tournament a three-way tie.
It remains for me to thank all of the teams for making the long trip to Fife for the event and for TJ Beattie and his crew for making it happen.