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Umpires irk Arbroath

Arbroath officials will decide today if they will lodge a protest with Cricket Scotland after they lost their Eastern Premiership title in controversial fashion.

After their match at Stoneywood-Dyce was cancelled due to a saturated pitch, the 2013 champions needed Falkland to beat Aberdeenshire to retain the league crown. However, their hopes were snuffed out when the crucial Mannofield encounter was also called off due to a damp patch on the outfield. Aberdeenshire have claimed top spot instead.

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Arbroath officials are convinced that the umpires took the decision to call their match off too early and felt that their groundsman should have been granted more time to make the field playable.

"What really irked us was the failure of the umpires to make full use of the time available for the groundsman to keep working on the damp patch," said Geoff Fisher, the Arbroath chairman. "The game was scrubbed out before 2pm, yet under the regulations they had until 4pm to start a match. Given the importance of the fixture, we think much more could have been done. I know that whatever we do will be seen in many quarters as sour grapes, but there is a principle here."

Elsewhere, a half century from captain Craig Wallace was the highlight of Forfarshire's victory over Carlton at Forthill. The result confirmed that SMRH finished at the foot of the table. Veteran Steve Knox also hit 64 to inspire Heriot's to a capital derby win over Watsonians.

Eastern Championship side Glenrothes also had their title ambitions ended at the weekend following a defeat by Penicuik, with Corstorphine claiming the glory instead.

That was a sore point for Glenrothes, their disappointment compounded when stalwart Greig Hopcroft announced his retirement from first-team cricket. "I hope to now help the seconds move upwards," he said.

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