WEATHER THE WINNER
Last weekend the First Team were at home against Banbury. Charlie Macdonell won the toss and put the visitors into bat on a dry but overcast morning. Allrounder Steve Clark (pictured) joined Simon Stanway in taking the new ball as unfortunately Mo Choudhury was unavailable due to injury.
Stanway as usual settled into a decent line and length and his new partner Clark justified the decision to take the new ball as he took the wicket of Joe White who was well caught by AJ Woodland in his first over. Clark continued to take wickets at regular intervals and by lunch the visitors had lost four wickets all to Clark.
Resuming after lunch the visitors set out rebuilding their innings and with some slow but steady success, however, the weather played its part as rain stopped play and with that total number of overs to be bowled in the game were reduced.
The First Team opening bowlers was well backed up by the change bowlers with Michael Payne and Rory Criddle taking a wicket each as Banbury ended their inning on 167-7 from their 52 overs.
With the reduced overs in the match, The First started their innings needing 168 from 43 overs. The early loss of the David Burnell did not affect the chase as Woodland and Payne kept up with the rate and when Payne was out for 24, Macdonell continued with Woodland but then the rain came in again which resulted in a loss of 10 overs.
When play resumed, the rate had now increased beyond a realistic achievable target. Macdonell was next to go, also on 24 and he was quickly followed by Clark. It was left to Sheridon Gumbs and debutant Scott Rolfe to see out the remaining overs for a draw as TPCC finished on 128-5 from 33 overs.
TWOS TWILIGHT WIN
Following a 100-minute break for rain in the Second Team’s innings, a five wicket win was achieved when Toby Wastling and Ali Partner scampered a single at gone twenty minutes past eight in distinctly gloomy conditions.
Victory was largely due to an excellent performance by all five bowlers. Tom Weymes and Nick Grant opened up, conceding just forty runs from the first 20 overs and also taking three wickets. Weymes was the first to strike as he bowled Phil Lines in the sixth over. Grant struck with the first ball of the following over as Imran Nawaz, who had scored 125 not out in the game at Tring, was caught for four, thanks to a good diving catch by Andrew Dixon at first slip. Grant then bowled former Buckinghamshire batsman Graeme Paskins for one.
Paul Orton and Jack Rodnight replaced the opening bowlers and enjoyed more success. Orton had Segio Feede caught by James Hawkes standing up behind the stumps before Rodnight took three wickets to reduce Marlow to 96-7. He bowled his first two victims with balls that came back in to the batsman and took the third as Matt Foy played too early to send an easy catch to Partner at cover. Weymes and Grant where then brought back into the attack and took a further wicket a piece before Weymes ended the innings when he bowled Will Bovill to end his near two-hour long vigil.
In dismissing Marlow for 106, it appeared that the Second Team had done the difficult work, but made heavy weather in achieving their modest target. They were 19-3 in the eighth over. Dixon was still there and had scored 29 when he was out LBW to Nawaz leaving the score at a slightly precarious 46-4. Wastling then joined Ant McCormack but after less than a quarter of an hour together there was the lengthy rain delay shortly before six o’clock. Resuming at gone half past seven there was a certain urgency as the evening closed in.
McCormack was out for a gutsy 22, which had held the middle order together, when he was caught one handed by Adam Searle at cover. Wastling hit four boundaries and with some good running between the wickets he and Partner saw the Second Team home.
The victory moved the Second Team from fifth to third in the table and next week play Kew at home who are 19 points behind in sixth place.
WEATHER HOLDS OFF THREES
The game promised much during the day, but with both sides near the relegation zone the draw became the only realistic option in the poor light at 8:30pm. The returning Mark Bater won the toss and put Burnham into bat.
Burnham had a strong opening partnership with Eklis Miah and Shahzad Biag, putting on 80 before the first wicket. An interruption for rain saw Burnham set at 102 runs off 24 overs. This level of run control was due to Jake Seagrave who regularly beat the bat and managed to go for less than four runs an over.
With more stoppages for rain, overs were lost. Burnham’s opener Miah pushed onto a well constructed 94 using his feet well as Burham finished with a flourish to end on 227-4 at their innings. Toby Seagrave picked up two wickets at the death and Chris Curry bowled a tidy spell into the wind.
The Third Team started batting well in there reply with Will Darraugh and Josh Camm scoring quickly, chasing a run rate of just over five runs per over. Darraugh departed on 22 and Benn Kempster came to the wicket with his usual swagger and got stuck into the bowling straight away and the achieved run rate moved close to seven.
Camm also departed for 22 and Tom Calder joined Kempster they shared a 50 run partnership. Club captain Kempster passed 600 runs for the season in his innings of 62 before he was caught off the bowling of Qureshi.
Wickets fell at regular intervals and a late flurry between Sanjoy Bassi and captain Bater got the Third Team within 32 runs with four overs to go, but in the impending gloom they had to settle for a draw.