Match Report - 2nd XI - 13th May 17

SHREWTON III V STEEPLE LANGFORD II

With both teams having no league fixtures this weekend a friendly was arranged between the two local rivals. Overnight rain had left the wicket a little soft on top but still hard below meaning that the captain who won the toss was always likely to field first on a drying wicket. This was exactly what happened with Langford being invited to bat.

The Shrewton opening bowlers were tight in their length and line and got the ball swinging nicely such that a few early wickets were lost. The arrival of Nathan Hill at the crease helped steady the ship but when Chris Miles joined him the score was 56 for 5 in the 13th over with the Langford innings in danger of slipping away. Hill and Miles dug in while still dispatching the bad ball and eventually took the score to a more respectable 110 for 5 at the half way stage. Two balls after drinks Chris Miles (24) picked out pretty much the only fielder on the leg side with the seventh wicket falling just a couple of balls later to leave Langford in the lurch again. Hill then took the initiative with some lusty blows and attempted to nurse the strike through what turned out to be some kamikaze running between the wickets which resulted in two run outs. Ollie Blake (13) provided good support to Hill who eventually carried his bat for an excellent 84 in a Langford total of 170 all out.

Matt Dhanji and Chris Miles opened the bowling for Langford against a top order who were quick on to anything slightly short or wide. Dhanji took the first wicket when the score was on 32 with the second coming shortly after thanks to an excellent pick up, throw and direct hit run out by Adi Hughes. The opening bowlers were replaced by Jamie Crosier who bowled six tight overs for just seven runs at one end, and at the other by Nathan Hill who bowled what could best be described as ‘erratically’ before being hooked after his third over. At the half way point, the Shrewton response was up with the run rate being 84 for 4. As with the Langford innings, the drinks interval brought two quick wickets straight after but this only served to bring the Shrewton number eight to the crease who decided to open his ample shoulders and to play some expansive shots. Runs started to come more quickly such that with 10 overs to go Shrewton required 22 runs with three wickets still in hand. Joe McNeilly (3 for 47) and Tony Gipson (1 for 24) were replaced by Dhanji (1 for 32) and Miles for one last throw of the dice. This proved to be successful as Miles (3 for 18) wrapped things up by bowling the last three batsmen.

A good game that swung one way then the other a couple of times ended with a win for Langford by 15 runs. Hopefully Langford can do the same again when the two sides meet in the league in mid July.