Johnston and Hair are achitects of Melrose’s downfall

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Four wickets from Ryan Johnston and an unbeaten half-century by Euan Hair gave Hawick and Wilton a comprehensive ten-wicket victory against Melrose at Buccleuch Park on Saturday.

Teri skipper Lee Stewart won the toss and put the visitors in to bat, and with the rain looking like it would have a part to play, it was Melrose who seized the initiative with their openers getting off to a steady start, making Hawick work for their wickets.

Neil Storey found the breakthrough with the score on 18, as he bowled Will Owen for 13. Melrose captain Freddie Alden was the next man out, dismissed by skipper Stewart.

Angus Wolfe-Murray and Sharif Hosney then brought Melrose back into the game with a quick-fire 28, but both were victims of Johnston as Hawick gained the upper hand on their Borders rivals.

The dismissal of Hosney brought a collapse, which saw Stuart Hair picking up three wickets in swift succession, with another brace from Johnston to leave Melrose on 75 for nine (all out).

Seventy-six would usually be a relatively easy target for Hawick, but tentative displays with the bat so far this season ensured the homesters were taking nothing for granted.

Hawick nerves were soon eased, though, when opener Euan Hair took the attack to the Melrose bowlers with an early six. Fellow opener Ronan Alexander looked in good touch to put the hosts on the front foot, and the pair brought up their 50 partnership after more boundaries from Hair.

The latter racked up his half-century with a four which took Hawick over the line and got them back to winning ways.