HUGELY experienced batsman Albert Simpson became one of the oldest players to start a game for Ayr Cricket Club.

And he narrowly missed out on helping steer his team to victory against Kilmarnock - more then four decades after making his debut for the top team.

He scored an impressive 31 not out in the narrow defeat. The 56-year-old, a ground contractor at New Cambusdoon, enjoyed the experience.

He said: “I enjoyed being out there - I was filling in as Scott and Andi McElnea were at a wedding. It was close but we should have had another 40 or 50 to put the game out of reach, it was disappointing.”

With professional Kenroy Peters unable to play owing to a Home Office ruling, Simpson hopes some of the young guns will step up.

He said: “We have a lot of young bowlers in the squad and hopefully they will learn from this. Our aim is to stay in the league, we don’t want to be going up just yet. This was my first proper knock for the first team in 13 years. I played earlier this season but only fielded. Kenroy is a great coach but with him not playing that opens doors to others. I will play when Ayr need me if my body stays together.”