Wytham vs Holton & Wheatley

Sunday 22 Apr 2013

Original Report by Alan Banyard

 

Holton Kick Off with Victory

After a hard fought encounter at Wytham, Holton finished with a fine victory.

Holton fielded a reasonably strong side including two new players, wicket keeper batsman Macca and all rounder Raj Gokani.  Peter Burrows was playing in his second Sunday game, having played a top scoring innings in our win against Wooton and Boars Hill last year.  We also had a new captain for 2013; John Kelly.

In dry if slightly chilly spring conditions, John won the toss and chose to bat first, though on the Wytham artificial there was unlikely to be any change in conditions during the game, other than a possible shower late in the day.

The innings got off to the worst possible start as second ball, Macca somehow missed a leg side full toss and was bowled off his pads - none for one.

Mark Kelly joined Peter Burrows and the pair made a cautious start against some tight bowling and variable bounce.  Just to make it more difficult, the outfield was soft and spongy and very bumpy making it almost impossible to score boudaries, other than by the aerial route.  Gradually the rate reached 3 three per over and the recovery was complete as the score passed 50.  Mark was then second to fall, caught off a wide delivery.

Peter was in fine form and with excellent support from Raj Gokani soon passed his half century.  As the innings was drawing towards the final 10 overs, wickets began to tumble as the push was made to get the score over 150.  Guy Burford, once again showed how to play at the death reaching an unbeaten double figure score as we finished on 174 for 8 after 40 overs.

At tea, we felt we had posted a pretty good score in view of the difficult conditions, especially as the first game of the season notably produces low scores.

Scores to come

Graham Hawkins opened the bowling with Robin Taylor.  Wytham made a good start to the innings, putting on fifty without loss, but they found scoring difficult against some tight bowling and the required rate began to increase.  Raj Gokani and Alun Regan were equally difficult to get away.  With plenty of wickets to spare the rate increase from 4 to 5 to 6 as we put the pressure on.

One of the key contributions to Holton's fielding was the wicket keeping of Macca.  On a wicket of variable and sometimes dangerously high bounce, Macca managed to stay up to the wicket for every single over of the innings.  With some exellent takes and bails removed in the blink of an eye, the batsman were forced back into the crease on a wicket that cried out for "coming down the track".  This was very effective in keeping the rate down.  Still though, it looked like only one big hitter was needed to swing the pendulum their way.

Then Neil Robinson was brought into the attack and after a nervous first over, quickly dispatched the number four bat for a single.  Then within a couple more overs Neil had three including two stumpings by Macca and the game was firmly in our grasp.  Undoubtedly, the most important wicket was Neil's third, the Wytham opener who scored a very good 43 (?).

With three overs to go and 7 wickets down, Wytham needed an unlikely 27 and with Guy Buford bowling two of the death overs, the game was sealed by 17 runs.

Scores to come (report currently from memory!)