Swinbrook vs Holton
Original report written by John Simpson
It’s the Jackson Five again for Holton!
So, back to last Sunday, and a chance for the season really to get under way after a loss against Bladon and a wash-out the next week at Combe. And at last we started playing!
Following in the footsteps of Bladon I lost the toss and we were invited to bat: time game and tea at the slightly early hour of 4.45 (local rules). So to maximize our time at the crease it was pads on and out to bat as soon as possible. After the overnight rain we were on Swinbrook’s new artificial track (not bad), after changing in the new pavilion.
Alan Banyard and I strode out to see what the Swinbrook bowling was like on the artificial, and although the ball was moving around a bit in the air, and bouncing very slightly more than expected off the track, we settled down reasonably quickly and started scoring. As always, one of the boundaries at Swinbrook was a short one, and this time it was on the river side. Despite the earlier rain the outfield was quite fast, and we managed to hit the fence a few times before 50 came up without loss. 200 would have been a winning score and with the might of the Holton batting to come it seemed a possibility.
As time moved on we decided it was time to move the score along, and, as ever, that heralded a wicket, with Alan caught for a sterling 20. Next up was James Race, looking to extend his indoor runfest. But today it was the early bath, caught before he was off the mark. But the arrival of Rob McKinney steadied things down, and Rob and I put on sixty or so before we both disappeared, attempting to hurry the score along. But at 124 for 4 things were looking good, and with Graham Hawkins holding the middle order together with 13 we were progressing quite nicely. With Barry bowled for a duck, and Matthew Johnston unfortunately playing on for nought things could have gone pear-shaped, but Guy Burford (16no) lashed out strongly and with support from Neil Robinson we ended at 4.45 on 159 for 7, and tea.
Holton 159-7 off 40 overs
John Simpson bowled 65
Alan Banyard caught 20
James Race caught 0
Rob McKinney caught 29
Graham Hawkins caught 13
Barry Gray bowled 0
Matthew Johnston bowled 0
Guy Burford not out 16
Neil Robinson not out 3
Did not bat: Alan Clark, Mike Jackson
Fall of wickets: 1-64 (batsman 2); 2-65 (3); 3-124 (4); 4-124 (1); 5-130 (5); 6-139 (6); 7-155 (7)
With tea over, it was Swinbrook’s turn to test the water. Their innings started at 5.15, giving them an hour and a quarter before the last 20 overs began at 6.30. They started off looking for the runs, but we had the stranglehold pairing of Mike Jackson and Alan Clark to dampen down their aspirations. Runs proved hard to come by, and soon Mike had one opener clean-bowled and the other excellently caught off a steepling skier by Matthew Johnston, who seemed to get smaller and smaller the higher the ball went up into the air, but (as at Tetsworth last year) he caught it safely and calmly as it plummeted down to earth. The Swinbrook No 4 settled down to see how the game progressed, whilst those around him succumbed first to Mike Jackson (two more wickets in his opening spell), a wicket for Alan, and then two in Guy Burford’s first spell of the year. The Swinbrook scorebook jumps from 29-4 to 68-8, but those who were there saw the wickets fall without too much increase in the score. In the final ten overs we needed three more wickets to win. Tidy spells from Alan Banyard and Neil Robinson were followed by a return by Mike Jackson and Graham Hawkins, who both picked up a tailender’s wicket (a jug for Mike), but No 4 and No 11 proved intractable over the last five overs, and we just missed wheedling them out as the innings ended on 83 for 9 and victory almost in our grasp.
Swinbrook 83-9 off 45 overs
Mike Jackson 15 5 25 5
Alan Clark 12 3 22 1
Guy Burford 5 1 8 2
Neil Robinson 5 1 6 0
Alan Banyard 3 0 11 0
Graham Hawkins 5 0 11 1
Catches: Matthew Johnston, James Race, Graham Hawkins, Guy Burford
RESULT: Match Drawn