MARSHALL HATCHICK TWO COUNTIES CRICKET CHAMPIONSHIP DIVISION 2
IPSWICH I v EXNING I
EXNING I 210 for 5 IPSWICH I 211 for 4
IPSWICH I (17 pts) beat EXNING I (7 pts) by 6 wickets
Exning batted first after losing the toss and there were soon signs of a hard season to come when John Howe (3 for 40) had reduced the visitors to 42 for 3 by the end of the 10th over. However, Tim Catley looked intent on carrying on from last season, where he fell just short of the 1000 runs target, and with Daniel Baigent out to justify a genuine ‘all-rounder’ tag at this level, the 4th wicket pair put on 118 to see 160 on the board before Baigent was unfortunate to be out, caught and bowled by slow bowler Jack Elford (2 for 61), just 3 runs short of a deserved half century.
While Catley ploughed on with a sense of inevitability that a century was there for the taking, newcomer Matt Marsh (25 no) sparkled in the final overs of the innings as they put on an unbeaten 50 to take the 45 over total to 210 for 5, with Catley unbeaten on 107.
Taking the positives of the Park side’s innings – lasting 45 overs and gaining the full batting points – their bowling attack of Ian Starling (1 for 39) and Baigent (1 for 49) gave further hopes of a ‘smash & grab’ victory as the hosts batting showed little urgency scoring at no more than 3 three runs an over for the first half of the innings and losing the hard hitting Dale Watling along the way.
However, when the obdurate Joe Busby was clean bowled by Baigent for a painstaking 45, the dynamics of the innings was ratcheted up as James Alder move from 50 to his century in just 26 balls and although Catley’s slow bowling (2 for 52) saw the end of him for 109, the momentum had already moved in favour of the hosts as skipper Chris Bell, in partnership with his brother, Steve, ensured that victory was there’s by 6 wickets, taking the score to 211 for 4 with 7 balls to spare.
MARSHALL HATCHICK TWO COUNTIES CRICKET CHAMPIONSHIP DIVISION 8 WEST
EXNING II v BROCKLEY II
EXNING II 104 All out BROCKLEY II 105 for 6
BROCKLEY II (20 pts) beat EXNING II (4 pts) by 4 wickets
A youthful Exning 2nd XI, although not victorious on the day, showed early signs that the Park side have made the right decision to re-enter 2nd XI League cricket, with the experience being gained at the Division 8 West level hopefully, resulting in success over the coming seasons.
With new skipper, Vince Colby, showing an enthusiasm and desire for all to take part and feel part of the team, the young and the ‘not so young’ managed to put 104 runs on the board when they batted first, with James Turner top scoring on 22, while the skipper posted up the 2nd highest score with 15. An array of visiting bowlers achieved success, led by Pete Mingay taking 3 for 21.
Despite only having a relatively small total to defend, the skipper had faith in the young bowlers who, supported by keen fielders, reduced the Brockley score to 86 for 6. However, Sam Fenner (18 no) had no intention of throwing victory away as he smacked three boundaries to lift the score to 105 for 6 and a 4 wicket win. The Exning Bowlers – the eldest being 16 – stuck to their task with Oakley Colby (3 for 30), Ryan Middleton (2 for 39) and Tom Addison (1 for 11) being rewarded with the wickets.
So, the Park side have started a new era with a fully functioning 2nd XI in League cricket and although two defeats on the first day of the season is hardly the most positive aspect, the fact that at least 22 players were available, and willing, on one of the main Bank Holidays of the year, augers well for the future of the Club. The fact that 8 of those 22 were teenagers adds a little glow to what the Park side is trying to achieve for the Club over the next few years. There is no doubt that Vince Colby will see to it that the 2nd XI revolves around the youth, with the odd dash of experience, which can but lead to a stronger, younger 1st XI over the coming seasons.