North-east cricket is set to have an extended run in September, despite the season being scheduled to end in the last week of August.
Jamie King, the new captain of Eastern Premier side Stoneywood-Dyce, welcomed the extension, which could result in his team playing some highly competitive games in the coming weeks, including clashes with city rivals Aberdeenshire and Gordonians.
He said: “It has been desperately frustrating for everyone in the game, but it would be just brilliant to have some game time during a month that has a reputation for good weather.
“An Indian summer would be just perfect, setting us up nicely for next season, while putting the misery of coronavirus behind us.”
King spent last winter honing his considerable bowling skills in Australia and was raring to go after shedding 20 kilos in preparation for a tough season in Scotland’s top club league.
“It was all a bit of a shock not to have any league cricket, but the blow was softened by being elected as captain after our overseas amateur Garreth Woolmarrans was unable to make the trip from South Africa,” said the 24-year-old, who broke into the Stoneywood-Dyce first team as a promising teenager five years ago, and has kept his place as a strike bowler since then for the Aberdeen side.
This weekend King will lead his charges in games at home against a Grades Select team on Saturday, followed by another friendly on Sunday when they meet Grampian, who were promoted to Grade 1 last season.
Aberdeenshire and Gordonians will also have friendly fixtures at Mannofield and Countesswells, but for many supporters of the club game all roads will lead to Fraserburgh tomorrow when Portcullis will be the visitors.
Michael Watson, the Fraserburgh president, was delighted to welcome the Duthie Park side to the Broch, and said: “Portcullis have a great reputation for being both sporting and sociable, and while we will give them the warmest of northern greetings, we will not be able to give them one of our traditional teas due to the Covid-19 restrictions imposed on us.
“It’s a great shame, but it has been that kind of season.”